If you are still hunting for summer beauty, look no further. Biennial Gaura is a dainty showstopper that has been blooming for months and could continue until frost.
This tall, native plant can reach 4 to 6 feet in height. The stem is hairy and the leaves are alternate and lance-shaped, slightly toothed to entire. Seductive spikes of slender pink buds are borne at the top of the plant. The buds open to reveal flowers with four white, arching petals. Dangling below the petals like pixie dust are 8 long stamens with large anthers, and an even longer style that ends in a 4-pronged stigma! (What a show off!) The delicate white flowers turn pink over time.
I have found this plant many times, growing along the Deerfield Trail in Blacksburg. It is a typical “roadside” wildflower that does well in wet or dry conditions, as long as it can get some sun. Be aware that the flowers tend to whither in the hot afternoon sun, giving the plant a shabby look at that time of day. But no matter, blooming guara is a real treasure to find, especially if you are a bumblebee. Another common name for this plant is Beeblossom!
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