Austral Indigo, Hill Indigo, Native Indigo, Australian Indigo, New Holland Indigo.
Indigofera, neo-Latin for indigo-bearing. Australis, Latin for southern.
Up to 2.5m.
Presence in Australia
Widespread. Noted in most areas across region.
This specie has been identified in the following Australian states: Qld, NSW, ACT, Vic, Tas, SA, WA.
Woodland and eucalypt forest. Commonly hilly areas.
Open erect spreading shrub to 2.5m high. Long slender stiff stems.
Poor, shallow soil in semi or dappled shade. Tolerates moderately heavy frost and extended wet periods. Adapts to most well-drained acidic soils.
Palatable, nutritious legume, grazed severely by livestock.
Mauve to purple (sometimes white), winter-spring. Pea-like.
Mid Nov to early Feb. Monitor closely as seeds shed immediately or very soon after maturity. Ensure collection by securing nylon stockings or paper bags to fruiting branches after flowering.
From scarified seed or cuttings. Pour boiling or very hot water over seeds and soak until water cools. Dry to prevent rotting and sow. Germination takes 3-4 weeks. Suitable for direct seeding in pots (2-3 seeds per pot).
From seed, particularly after fire. Establishes readily when direct seeded.
Shade and shelter
Useful low-level cover in windbreaks.
Legume - improves soil fertility by "fixing" nitrogen.
Excellent habitat. Flowers are a pollen and nectar source for many native insects, including bees and wasps. Also food for butterfly caterpillars.
Roots hammered and placed in salt or fresh water to poison fish.
Attractive ornamental, particularly when flowering. Plant in groups for best effect. Tip prune from when young to promote bushiness and prevent straggliness. Cut dead or straggly branches at base. Coppices.
Leaves and stems produce yellow-fawn dye with alum as mordant.