Arrowleaf buckwheat is a low-growing perennial that spreads into low-growing, shrubby mats over time. In late spring and summer, clusters of creamy white tubular flowers plunge into the air, resembling puffy clouds balancing on tall stalks, beckoning butterflies and bees. True to its name, the dark green leaves of this plant are shaped like arrowheads, with diagnostic white undersides.
- Plant type/canopy layer: deciduous perennial herbaceous plant
- Size at maturity: 6”-24” tall, 6”-12” wide
- Light requirements: full sun to light shade
- Moisture requirements: dry to moist soil, extremely well-drained
- Bloom time: May - July
- Growth rate/ease: fast growing, easy to grow
- Wildlife support: flowers are an important nectar source for adult butterflies, bees and other insect pollinators and support/attract beneficial and pest-eating insects; leaves are larval food source for butterflies and moths; seeds provide food for birds and small mammals; caterpillar host plant
- Native habitat/range: locally common growing on open rocky slopes, sandy loam, and gravel at low to high elevations primarily east of the Cascades from sea level to 8200 ft. Portland Plant List - no.
- Special features & uses: pollinator plant; extremely drought tolerant; landscape uses include pollinator gardens, meadowscapes, rock gardens; medicinally used as a cold remedy, an antidiarrheal, and a wash for infected cuts.
Gardening with Arrowleaf Buckwheat: This uncommon garden plant will thrive in sunny areas that are rocky or sandy and extremely well-draining. Consider pairing with other flowering perennials, such as asters, and bunchgrasses in exposed pollinator and/or rock gardens.
Photo Credits 1 & 4: Seven Oaks Natives
Photo Credits 2 & 3: Karli Del Biondo, Beetles and Bees