Sunny Morning false indigo is a Chicagoland Grows selection. Chicagoland Grows is a plant introduction partnership of the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Morton Arboretum, and the Ornamental Growers Association of Northern Illinois, formed to promote plant cultivars that perform well in northern Illinois. This variety was developed at the Chicago Botanic Garden; it was selected for its butter-yellow flowers borne on gray-tinted stems nicely displayed above the medium- to dark-green foliage. Sunny Morning is part of the Prairieblues False Indigo Series.
Members of the genus Baptisia are commonly known as wild or false indigo due to their use by early Americans as a blue dye. Although "indigo" is in the common name, the blooms of native species may be blue, yellow, or white and the blooms of newer hybrids may include lavenders and bi-colors. The late spring or early summer flowers emerge along long stems held above attractive foliage and are followed in the fall by dark pods. Overall habits of the plant are broad-rounded mounds to vase-shaped and range in height from 2 to 5 feet. Baptisia is considered easy-to-grow; the plants are sun-loving, long-lived perennials with very good drought tolerance, once established.
Baptisia are native to North America; there are more than 20 species within the genus. The Chicago Botanic Garden's collection includes more than 60 varieties and more than 9,000 individual plants. A number of new varieties of Baptisia have been developed as part of the Plant Breeding program at the Chicago Botanic Garden. Selection criteria included bloom production, color, habi,t and plant size. These new cultivars have been introduced to the trade through the Chicagoland Grows program. The Chicago Botanic Garden now holds the national collection of Baptisia under the auspices of the Plant Collections Network of the American Public Gardens Association.