Medina Garden Nursery which specializes in native plants was the source for this hard to find plant. They are a great resource for native plants since many of the plants they offer are scarce at nurseries and some, like Acourtia wrightii, are only available from specialists in native plants. So excited to find an unusual locally native plant I snapped it up despite its unfortunate common name Brownfoot. Brownfoot refers to a thick root or hairs that form at the base of the plant though I don't see that when I look.
Acourtia wrightii has never been featured on my blog because it didn't look like much for four years. I wondered at times if it would even survive. After watching two woody stems struggle for several years I decided to cut the whole thing back to three inches in early spring. That turned out to be a good decision because, with the help of spring rain, it quickly put out numerous arching stems covered with thick, shiny, leathery leaves. Planted where there's plenty of light but limited direct sun during the heat of the day seems to be a good spot for this plant.
Leaves are shiny and leathery.
According to Wasowski's book its seeds are attractive too. Unfortunately, I didn't remember that detail before deadheading it so just pretend this stem is still attached and ignore those brown leaves.
Now that it's covered in blooms, I can easily imagine a row of blooming Brownfoot arching over lower plants in the border. It colonizes slowly by rhizomes so if the seeds don't work I'll need to be patient or make another trip to Medina.
Native to Central Texas and Cold Hardy to Zone 7 and heat hardy to Zone 10, it has a wide range. Typical of many plants from our arid climate it can go for long periods of time without water. The leaves will lose their color without dropping and then green up when rains return. Now that's a worthy plant for my Texas garden.