Biennial with single branching stems with 1 to 24 deep blue-violet flowers. Flowers are funnel-shaped with flaring fringed lips. Until pollinated, the flowers open during daylight hours then close at night. Seed needs light to germinate so this species is often found in open places. First year's growth is just a small rosette of leaves. Difficult to get started.
Open wetlands, bogs, meadows and swales.
Attracts bees which crawl inside the flower.