Scrophularia marilandica, Late Figwort


Two year-old plant, early spring, looks plain -but the pollinators decide what's attractive.

Late Figwort, also known as Maryland Figwort, reaches its northwestern-most boundary just shy of the Twin Cities. This tall herbaceous perennial is likely to go unnoticed by most. If more people knew what a pollinator magnet it was, I suspect more people would have planted it. Both of those reasons could account for some part of its unrecorded status in Hennepin County.

Should you plant Late Figwort? Shelterwood is not going to be a stickler for county native status on this one, but if you must, you are in luck! There is another Figwort, Early Figwort, that is native to much of Minnesota's counties and is nearly identical, but for bloom time and shorter stature.

Both Figworts are tolerant of woodland and direct sun, although both will attract more pollinators when grown out in the sun for at least part of the day. The Late Figwort seen in these pictures grew to 7 feet tall in the open sunshine of a vegetable garden. I also have it growing, with no help from me, on the north side of a sugar maple covered slope that receives a little dappled sun, at best. Barring the driest of soils, Figwort is easy and, as I've said, the pollinators love it, as the short video below shows.

Blooms: greenish-copper, July to September

Height: 4 to 9 feet

Conditions: sun to pt shade, sun is best for pollinators, moist-medium to medium soils

Late Figwort is a must-have plant for pollinators and pollinator photography at home!