A stately perennial, about three feet high, with stout, branching reddish, slightly downy stems, bearing several tall spires of flowers. The handsome leaves are bright green, smooth on the upper side, slightly downy, but not silvery, on the under, with from seven to thirteen leaflets, and the flower-cluster is very erect and compact, eight or ten inches long, beautifully shaded in color, from the pale, silky buds at the tip, to the blue and purple of the open flowers, which are about five-eighths of an inch long, with a lilac standard, tipped with purple. The upper flowers have white wings, veined with blue, and a green calyx, with reddish teeth, and the lower flowers have bright blue wings, veined with purple, and a reddish-purple calyx. This grows in wet places.