Genus: Plectranthus Plectranthus Photo/Illustration: Jenkins Farmer (Plectranthus) plek-TRAN-thus Lamiaceae Grown for foliage and flowers, Plectranthus is a genus of about 350 species of annuals, evergreen perennials, semi-succulents, and shrubs from Africa, Madagascar, Asia, Australasia, and Pacific islands. They are useful in a cool greenhouse or conservatory or outdoors in hanging baskets, containers, or sunny borders. The foliage is often ornamental, with decorative margins and a fuzzy appearance. The flowers are small but are often borne in good-size racemes of tubular, 2-lipped flowers in shades of purple, pink, white, or blue. Plectranthus are part of the mint family and closely related to Solenostemon (coleus). Noteworthy characteristics: Many species are fast-growing. Attractive, aromatic, soft foliage which often has scalloped, toothed or wavy edges. Care: Plectranthus needs well-drained soil of moderate fertility in dappled shade. If grown indoors, provide full light but with protection from hot sun. Water freely and fertilize monthly during active growth, but keep just moist in winter. Propagation: Divide in spring, or take stem-tip cuttings any time. Rooted branches of trailing species can be removed. To grow from seed, sow ripe seed at 66° to 75°F. Species, varieties and clutivars for genus Plectranthus 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Mexican mint Plectranthus amboinicus 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Silver spurflower Plectranthus argentatus 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Swedish ivy Plectranthus forsteri 'Green on Green' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Purple Swedish ivy Plectranthus purpuratus Problems: Mealybugs, spider mites, leaf spots, and root rot can sometimes be problems. View the discussion thread.