Gaura lindheimeri, commonly called gaura, is a herbaceous clump-forming perennial native to Texas and Louisiana. It grows to as much as 5' tall on stems clad with spoon-shaped to lanceolate leaves (3" long)—pinkish buds along wiry, erect, wand-like stems open to white flowers which slowly fade to pink. Flowers appear in long, loose, terminal panicles and open only a few at a time. Narrow, lance-shaped, stemless leaves (1-3" long) are occasionally spotted with maroon.
Best when grown in sandy, loamy, and well-drained soils in full sun. Good drainage is essential—a taprooted plant that tolerates heat, humidity, and some drought. Remove spent flower spikes to prolong the bloom period. Thin flower stems tend to become leggy and flop, mainly when grown in rich soils, and plants can benefit from close planting or support from adjacent perennials. Plants (particularly those which typically grow tall) may be cut back in late spring by 1/2 to control size. May self-seed if spent flower stems are left in place in the fall.
Light: Full Sun
Zone: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9