Plains Wildindigo (Baptisia leucophaea)


Plains Wildindigo Baptisia leucophaea Nutt. (PEA FAMILY)

Plains wildindigo is a bushy perennial with spreading, branched stems, hairy throughout. The leaves are palmately trifoliolate, with oblanceolate leaflets and 2 large leaflike stipules giving the appearance of 5 leaflets. The inflorescence consists of drooping, dense racemes of large yellow pea flowers. The legumes are ovoid, 1-2 1/2 in. long, terminating in a beak. A decoction of the leaves of this plant was used by Indians as a stimulant and for application to cuts and wounds. An infusion made from the roots was also used as a remedy for typhoid and scarlet fever.