Plants that work well in rain gardens
Southern blue flag | Iris virginica
A late spring bloomer, this iris is native to inland swamps, marshes and flood plains in northern and central Missouri.
- Flowers: May–June
- Mature height, 2–3 feet; spread, 1–2 feet
- Fragrant, blue violet flowers with falls crested in yellow and white
- Forms a solid mat that needs thinning to stimulate flowers that provide nectar for hummingbirds
Golden Alexanders | Zizia aurea
This member of the carrot family is a host plant for black swallowtail butterflies.
- Flowers: April–June
- Mature height, 12–30 inches; spread, 16–24 inches
- Long-lasting flowers that turn into seed clusters
- Thick, glossy semi-evergreen foliage provides nice contrast to other native plants
Culver’s root | Veronicastrum virginicum
It is a good cut flower and provides nectar for many varieties of bees.
- Flowers: June–August
- Mature height, 3–5 feet; spread, 2–4 feet
- Candle-like spikes of pinkish-white flowers are 6 inches long
- Blooms for 4–6 weeks
Swamp milkweed | Asclepia incarnate
Also called marsh milkweed, this milkweed grows naturally in swamps and wet meadows and grows well in the garden.
- Flowers: August–September
- Mature height, 3–4 feet; spread, 3–4 feet
- Has a faint vanilla fragrance when it blooms
- Excellent nectar plant for butterflies and an exceptional host to monarch caterpillars
- Blooms also provide nectar for hummingbirds and butterflies
Palm sedge | Carex muskingumensis
This sedge resembles miniature palm fronds and is almost evergreen.
- Mature height, 11–24 inches; spread, 12–18 inches
- 8-inch-long, pointed leaves radiate from stem tops
- Does well in light shade to full sun