March – Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea)

Golden Alexander

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Early Spring Golden Alexander

Zizia aurea

This eager, spring beauty is a versatile and adaptable plant. Boasting of small, golden-yellow flowers that are displayed on an array of gently-curved umbels it maybe one of the first splashes of color in the spring. Zizia is an important early source of pollen and nectar for newly emerging bees and other insects. The stalks showcase pointy, toothed leaves that sport a deep green coloration. Being able to survive in various conditions with a high tolerance for drought make this perennial a great choice for low maintenance areas of a garden.

After the flowers have completed their bloom cycle, one can let them go to seed as the seedheads turn a attractive purple which can be a great accent to subsequent blooming perennials. However, If the spent flowers are deadheaded, one is quite often rewarded with a second bloom in the fall!

Pollinating insects that visit Zizia include Mining bees, Azure butterflies, Negro bugs and Soldier beetles. It also serves as a larval host plant for the Black Swallowtail butterfly.

Height

1-3 feet (30-90cm)

Blooming Period

Spring-Early Summer

Light

Full to Partial Sun

Water

Moist to Dry

Soil

Acidic to Neutral

Zone

3-8

Native Ontario Habitat

Moist meadows, woodlands and prairies