What is a 'plectranthus hybrida'-mona lavender? - Knowledgebase Question

E. Liverpool, Oh
Question by dtkwade
August 31, 2006
My mother bought a beautiful plant for me, I've never heard of it, it is called 'Plectranthus hybrida'-'Mona Lavender'. Is it an indoor/outdoor plant, at the moment it is outside. Do I need to pinch back the spent blooms to keep it flowering? Will it live through the winter if I keep it indoors? Any information about this beautiful plant will be appreciated. Thank you.


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Answer from NGA
August 31, 2006

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Plectranthus 'Mona Lavender' is from South Africa so it is definitely an outdoor plant during summer months but an indoor plant during the winter in your growing region. Mona lavender is different from other Plectranthus because it is grown for its flowers. It is a hybrid developed at the famous Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens in South Africa, and it performs exceptionally well in the South, but is grown as an annual in the North. The small, bushy plant has dark green foliage with hints of purple. The undersides of the leaves are dark purple.

Though its foliage is handsome, it is the spikes of dark lavender flowers that everyone adores. These flowers are produced for months in the garden.

Mona lavender prefers moist, well-drained soil in morning sun and afternoon shade or filtered light. This plant will reward you for efforts in bed preparation. If you have tight, heavy soil that doesn't drain well, incorporate 3 to 4 inches of organic matter and till in 6 to 8 inches deep.

It has virtually no insect or disease pressures, making it an environmentally friendly plant.

Mona lavender is a versatile performer, exceptional as a border plant and impressive in mixed containers.

Cut off the spent flowering spikes to encourage additional blooms this summer. When nighttime temperatures begin to drop (55F), take your plant indoors and place it in a bright location. It may not bloom all winter but you can keep it alive and then set it outside in the spring when the weather warms. It needs full sunshine and heat in order to bloom well.

Best wishes with your new plectranthus!

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