18 Best Purple Wildflowers In Tennessee To Spot On Your Next Adventure

There are various beautiful wildflowers that can be found all over Tennessee. If you find yourself walking and come across some of these beautiful flowers, you may wish to know more information about them.

18 Best Purple Wildflowers Tennessee To Spot On Your Next Adventure

In fact, there are numerous beautiful purple wildflowers that you may spot while you travel around Tennessee.

In this article, we have gathered the 18 best purple wildflowers that you may see while on your next adventure in Tennessee.

1. Common Burdock

The Common Burdock can be found in Tennessee’s pastures, open grasslands, hay fields, roadside ditches, abandoned fields, barnyards, railroads, and other disturbed areas.

Large leaves and rich purple blooms that resemble rhubarb make Common Burdock an easy plant to recognize.

Butterflies, bees, and birds are attracted to this purple wildflower. It frequently has root rot and powdery mildew. Therefore, if you touch this plant, please be careful as it could irritate your skin or trigger an allergic reaction.

2. Winter Vetch

Winter vetch is frequently grown with tomatoes as a companion plant. This is since Winter Vetch helps to add nitrogen into the soil, which prevents weeds from sprouting.

This purple wildflower can be found growing in a variety of habitats, including disturbed areas, roadsides, meadows, grasslands, old fields, and woodlands. Sometimes, this wildflower can be seen as invasive, as it may spread quite a lot.

3. Purple Loosestrife

The Purple Loosestrife will often bloom during summer and grow to around 5 inches high.

This perennial species is commonly found in Tennessee’s lakes, marshes, wet meadows, and ditches.

Due to Purple Loosestrife’s rapid reproduction—each flower spike can release up to 300,000 seeds—it is considered an invasive plant. It also multiplies by sending out new shoots from its roots.

4. Alfalfa

The Alfalfa, is also referred to as Lucerne. This is a small wildflower, which will commonly reach a mature height of 1 to 3 inches. You can see these flowers blooming from spring until fall.

Alfalfa is frequently grown by farmers as a crop for feeding livestock, and through its roots, it converts airborne nitrogen into the soil. Butterflies, bees, and birds are drawn to this purple wildflower.

5. Creeping Charlie

The Creeping Charlie goes by various other names including Catsfoot, Alehoof, Filed Balm and Hegemaids.

This plant thrives in big clusters in wet, partially shaded locations and has excellent sun tolerance. Wild bees often gather pollen from the Creeping Charlie.

In some areas, this purple wildflower is invasive. For instance, it is regarded as an aggressive weed in Tennessee woodlands and lawns, mostly due to the plant’s vast root system making it challenging to remove by mowing or hand-pulling.

6. Dame’s Rocket

In Tennessee, you will come across Dame’s Rocket quite a lot. This is a fast-growing flower, which inhabits forests and meadows.

This spring-blooming flower has tender young leaves that are strong in vitamin C. These leaves can be added to salads, and have a mildly bitter flavor.

Due to their similar big flower clusters, native Phlox species and Dame’s Rocket are sometimes confused.

Yet you can tell them apart because Dame’s Rocket has opposite-facing leaves and four petals per flower, whereas Phlox flowers have five petals and opposite-facing foliage.

7. Bull Thistle

The Bull Thistle can also go by the name Boar Thistle, Spear Thistle and Common Thistle. It is usually around 2 to 6 inches high, and will bloom during summer to fall.

Bull Thistle is a widespread purple wildflower found in Tennessee that has sharp spines. Thus, be careful when trying to handle this flower.

It is a fantastic bloom for luring enormous bees and butterflies. The American Goldfinch’s preferred food item is the seeds from this thistle.

These birds wait till the blooms bloom in the late summer to rear their young because they line their nests with the thistledown.

8. Tall Morning Glory

In dry, rich soil, tall morning glory can flourish. This perennial can be found in waste areas, old fields, gardens and by the roadside.

Tall Morning Glory seeds have been employed in the past as psychedelics. Overall, these flowers have very distinctive open facing blooms, with the petals creating a star shape. This plant can grow quite high to around 12 to 15 inches.

9. Bittersweet Nightshade

Bittersweet Nightshade can be found in marshes, hedges, scrublands, and forests. It is visible from spring to summer. Some birds enjoy the lovely tiny berries on this purple wildflower.

It is a very small flower, but the deep violet petals stand out compared to the deep yellow and protruding center.

Bittersweet Nightshade is dangerous to humans if any parts of the plant are consumed. In additions, the leaves on this plant are poisonous to animals as well.

10. Wild Bee Balm

In Tennessee, search for these aromatic clump-forming perennial with lovely lilac-purple wildflowers in open fields, meadows, and by roadways.

The antibacterial properties of Bee Balm helps to prevent colds and the flu. It creates a pleasant tea when made from the plant’s leaves and has many other health advantages.

This wonderful wildflower will bloom in summer and will draw in hummingbirds.

11. Common Grape Hyacinth

The name “Grape Hyacinth” comes from the way this Common Grape Hyacinth, also known as bluebells, resembles a cluster of little grapes.

This perennial can be found in a variety of wild settings, including plains, fields, hillsides, and along roadways.

This easy-to-grow wildflower is a stunning addition to any backyard garden. However, keep an eye out for deer, rabbits, and squirrels since they like to consume their fresh blossoms.

12. Smooth Blue Aster

The Smooth Blue Aster can go by many names, like the Michaelmas Daisy and Glaucous Aster. It has subtle purple petals with a bright yellow center. These flowers usually bloom during summer until the end of fall.

This eye-catching purple wildflower grows in Tennessee’s plains, meadows, and hillsides. It can grow up to 3 inches high, creating a truly beautiful sight to see.

13. Hoary Vervain

Meadows, pastures, and dry, sandy soils are where you can find the medium growing Hoary Vervain wildflower. This is quite a drought resistant flower, which doesn’t need much water to survive.

Hoary Vervain is a very significant wildflower because the caterpillars of the Common Buckeye Butterfly thrive on the leaves. The seeds are also an essential component of the diets of many tiny mammals and birds.

14. Wild Geranium

From late spring to mid-summer, you will find Wild Geranium appearing in forests all over Tennessee. They have very soft and delicate blooms, with a soft white center.

These wildflowers enjoy all kinds of soil and will grow to around 12 to 24 inches in height.

Usually found in big groups, wild geraniums are well-liked garden plants. This perennial has also been employed as a device in herbal medicine to stop bleeding.

15. Tall Bellflower

In Tennessee, the Tall Bellflower grows well in areas with some shade, such as ditches, open forests, stream banks, shaded meadows, and woodland edges.

Even though these flowers are called tall, they don’t actually grow that large. At most, they will reach a mature height of 3 to 6 inches.

Since the Tall Bellflower can’t self-pollinate, it is pollinated by skippers, butterflies, long-tongued bees, and Halictid bees.

16. Kudzu

Kudzu is sometimes referred to as the Japanese Arrowroot. It can reach a mature size of between 30 and 100 inches.

If there are no vertical surfaces, this climbing purple wildflower spreads as ground cover. Although, it will usually climb surfaces like trees, rocks, and walls.

In Tennessee, Kudzu is a common purple wildflower that has become very invasive. Due to human activity and the acts of mammals and birds, the seeds spread rapidly.

17. Texas Toadflax

The Texas or Blue Toadflax can be recognized by its protruding spurs. The nectar inside is attractive to lots of pollinating insects. It may have long stems, but the buds and leaves are quite small.

This purple wildflower can be found in Tennessee’s meadows, sand, scrub, woodlands, and rocky slopes, among other environments

18. Giant Ironweed

The Giant Ironweed is a perennial flower with sturdy, towering blooms that are dark purple. Throughout Tennessee, meadows and wooded areas are where you can frequently find the Giant Ironweed.

When planted in a group, this purple wildflower makes a wonderful addition to any backyard garden. Many kinds of butterflies, such as swallowtails and monarchs, are drawn to Giant Ironweed.


As you can see, there are numerous purple wildflowers that you may come across in Tennessee. All of these flowers produce beautiful and vibrant purple blooms that you will enjoy seeing.

We hope you have found this article interesting. Now you know the 18 best purple wildflowers you might want to try to spot during your next adventure in Tennessee.

Diane Peirce
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