CT DR RG P
Soil: Rich Loam
Moisture: Moist to Wet
Light: Full to Part Sun (preferred)
Plant Height: 1 to 3 feet
Plant Width: up to 1 foot
Landscape Value: Great for water gardens, rain gardens, along stream and pond edges, in wet meadows and low spots, and in borders as long as the soils do not dry out.
An upright perennial with square stems and purplish-blue (occasionally pink or white) snapdragon-like flowers that bloom throughout the summer. Flowers appear in pairs reaching out on long stalks from the axils of opposite, clasping leaves. Each flower purportedly resembles the face of a smiling monkey, hence the common name. Plant size is strongly influenced by moisture level and soil fertility. Attracts butterflies and bees. Pollinated by bumblebees, as these are one of the few insects strong enough to force their way into the partially closed throat of the flowers. Larval host for Common Buckeye and Baltimore Checkerspot butterflies. Tolerates occasional flooding.
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center (photo by Thomas Muller)
North Carolina State Extension (photo by Peter Dziuk)