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Little River Cooperative

Butterfly Pea Vine (clitoria tematea) 30 seeds

Regular price $6.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $6.00 USD
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Clitoria, commonly known as “pea vine” or “butterfly pea”, is a tropical plant native to temperate areas of the world, including Southeast Asia and Madagascar., where the flowers are often used as a food dye or dipped in batter and deep-fried. Although the seed pod is not edible, we love growing clitoria in gardens and at the farm, allowing it to climb up any unused fence space and produce beautiful eidible bright blue flowers. Butterfly pea vine starts its growth slowly but then ramps up during the hottest months of the year, growing quickly and flowering daily. We harvest the flowers daily for sale to chefs and to dry for teas and we are amazed when we come back to one mature plant day after day and find it full of flowers; the amount of flowers one plant can produce is astounding. Leave a few flowers on your plant to get pollinated and make brown seed pods and you'll have plenty of pea vine seeds for next season. If you don't get around to harvesting all of your seed pods they will burst open at maturity and self seed easily. Butterfly pea vine is in the Fabaceae family and thusly can be used to fix nitrogen

In Southeast Asian countries communities have been brewing and drinking butterfly pea vine tea for centuries, and its just now becoming more popular in America. The traditional recipe is to brew the flowers along with lemongrass. The bright blue teas flavor is earthy and woody, similar to green tea, and is prized for being highly medicinal and containing compounds beneficial for healthy skin. 

Another fun aspect of Butterfly pea flowers is their color changing abilities! Brew the flowers in water (or soak in alcohol) for a bright blue coloring effect... add anything acidic (lemon juice, for example) and watch the liquid turn lavender! Mixologists are big fans of this trick for creating "mood ring" style cocktails, and of course for the ability to create wild colored beverages naturally. 

More info on butterfly pea vines medicinal properties here: 
https://www.medicinalplantsanduses.com/clitoria-ternatea-medicinal-uses-images

https://www.majesticherbs.com/clitoria-ternatea-blue-butterfly-pea-flowers-benefits/

Planting and growing tips: Plant seeds 1/4 inch deep in premoistened potting mix in a small pot or seedling tray. Keep cells moist in partial shade until germination, when they can be moved to full sun exposure. Seeds can take 10 days to germinate so be patient. Soaking the seeds for 24 hours before planting can speed up & increase germination success. Clitoria is a tropical sun loving climbing vine so make sure to plant it up against a large fence or give it a large trellis to climb. Picking flowers daily will encourage the plant to produce more flowers daily. Seeds and seed pods aren't edible but if you want the plant to make some so you can save seed just leave a few flowers on the vine to mature into seed pods. Plants can be spaced as close together as 1 plant per foot. 

All seeds were harvested from our urban farm and plant nursery in 2020. Seed packages are hand silkscreened by Gold Teeth Brooklyn, a handmade stationery company based in Los Angeles. 

Seeds have been tested for reliable germination in our nursery at 80 degree daytime temperatures. We recommend using them within 1 year of date of purchase. 

Please note: because we are a working farm we only ship seed orders once weekly (Tuesdays) so please be patient with your package. If you need a rush shipment please email us and we will do our best to accommodate. 

Materials

All of our plants are produced using OMRI certified organic materials (potting mix, fertilizer & pesticides) however our nursery is not certified organic. Plants are shipped in compostable peat moss pots and we use heirloom & organic seeds whenever possible.

Shipping & Returns

We ship plant orders every Monday. Due to the nature of shipping plants we only offer expedited shipping for our live plant orders. Our returns & exchanges policy is also quite strict since its hard to control the quality of a plant once it leaves our facility, however we do our very best to make sure that each and every customer is satisfied with their plants. Read more about our policies here. 

Size

All of our plants are potted in 4" pots and their foliage size varies based on how large the plant is naturally when its root ball is the correct size for the pot. If a plant is too tall for our shipping box we may prune it to fit (bonus: many plants do better after being pruned since they make bushier growth). We do our very best to ship all of our plants in the "sweet spot" of maturity however so long as the roots have colonized the pot we will consider a plant mature enough to ship.

Care Instructions

When you receive your plant its critical to get it out of its box and into the light the day it arrives. It will also want to be removed from its compostable plastic wrapping and given fresh water to drink. Keep in mind, this plant was grown in the tropical humid climate of South Florida, so if it's terribly cold or dry where you are it'll need to be hardened off before planting outdoors. Visit our care instructions page for more thorough info about caring for your new plant friend.

  • What Our Customers Have to Say:

    This is a great, local organization with really knowledgeable & friendly staff. They make gardening easy and accessible, and I've purchased many high quality plants and equipment from them.
    -Kate Black (5 star google review)

  • And Another One:

    How lucky we are to have a resource like Little River Cooperative here in Miami, not only for the access they offer to a great selection of plants and produce, but also for the knowledge they provide and the sense of community they foster!
    -Nick Vagnoni (5 star google review)