Parahebe are evergreen or semi-evergreen subshrubs and perennials, closely related to Hebe or Veronica. These 30 species are mostly from the sunny, dry, stony habitats of Australia, New Zealand, and Papua New Guinea. Their paired leaves and racemes of white, pink, lilac, or blue somewhat floppy flowers make them unusual additions to the perennial border, gravel bed, or for growing through shrubs. Many are mat-forming or trailing and look stunning tumbling over walls or large rocks.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsA group of herbaceous and semi-shrubby perennials, closely related to Hebe but generally smaller and of more delicate appearance. They have creeping stems, which may form broad mats, and often more or less upright branches. Small, usually toothed, often glossy leaves are neatly paired along the stems. Small white to lavender blue flowers are carried above the foliage. Some are fine rock garden plants. Others are unusual additions to the perennial border. Most thrive in sun or light shade, with reasonably well drained, non-alkaline soil and moderate to regular watering. They are best near the coast, not tolerating high heat.
CareWell-drained, poor to moderately fertile soil in full sun. Shelter from cold, drying winds where not hardy.
PropagationSow seed in containers in a cold frame as soon as ripe or in spring. Take semi-ripe cuttings in early or midsummer.
ProblemsSlugs may attack new growth.