smells like chocolate

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chocolate flower
berlandiera lyrata
asteraceae

  • sprawling groundcover, 1-2' tall and wide

  • yellow, chocolate-scented flowers in warm weather 

  • regular to moderate water (low to terrace zones)

  • FULL TO PART SUN

  • HARDY TO ABOUT -30°F 

  • nectar plant for insects, seeds feed birds 

This plant is almost too incredible to believe. Native to most of the SW United States and Northern Mexico, chocolate flower (Berlandiera lyrata) lives up to its name--the flowers smell distinctly like chocolate, especially in the morning! It is native to soil types that are dry, shallow and rocky such as sandy loams and limestone soils, along roadsides and in grasslands.

Growing 1-2 feet tall and wide, chocolate flower will bloom most of the year when the weather is warm. They make great additions to the perennial flower bed, in containers, and on edges. If plants get ragged-looking, sheer them to the ground to encourage fresh, new growth. 

They take moderate to low water, full to part sun, and well-drained soil. They take temperatures as cold as -30°F. This is an excellent nectar plant for butterflies and native bees, and seed-eating birds like goldfinches love the seeds that follow. 

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Katherine Gierlach