January 09, 2013

Persian Shield

Strobilanthes dyerianus is frequently sold as an annual for summer use. It roots easily and maybe grown as a houseplant. Only those who bring it through a winter get to see the cone-shaped blue flowers.

Plays well with others; I've planted it with Purple Heart,
Licorice plant, red Spider Lilies, lavender Pentas, and lilies.
Sometime in July or August I remember to take cuttings like these.
Cuttings will outgrow their pot and get easily rootbound. 
Today i repotted 6. One has buds forming so we will see
short-day blooms soon.
Strobilanthes is sometimes called 'Bermuda Conehead' for
these little blue blossoms.
Usually Persian Shield returns here in zone 8b without fail.
I take cuttings every year just in case and to have more
of that gorgeous purple foliage throughout the garden.
All photos used today are my own; none were taken today.
It seemed like a good day to review previous years' bloom.
Plants are readily available in the spring in garden centers. 
I almost forgot to mention that the best deep purples are grown in shade or part shade.
In the sun, the leaves get silvery if silver is something you need in your garden.

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