Coleus argentatus or Plectranthus argentatus

Both names Plectranthus and Coleus are recognized. Plectranthus was described by Charles Louis L’Héritier de Brutelle (1746-1800) a French botanist, in 1788. Coleus was used by João de Loureiro (1717-1791), a Portuguese botanist in 1790 and in further descriptions in the 1800s they were separated due to the details of the stamens. But they were merged together into Plectranthus by J. K. Morton in Journal of the Linnean Society of London in 1962. Coleus argentatus or Plectranthus argentatus or commonly called Silver Spurflower it related to the mint and is part of the Lamiaceae family of plants. This species was first described by Stanley Thatcher (1910-1973) an Australian botanist. The name argentatus is for the leaves that are hairy and look silvery and is from Latin.

Plectranthus argentatus or Coleus argentatus
Plectranthus argentatus at the St. James’s Park in London planted in a mixed border.

Plectranthus argentatus can grow to 90cm or 3ft and is native to Australia. It is an evergreen shrub. The hairy leaves are ovate and the bluish-white flowers appear on terminal racemes of up to 12in or 30cm. Usually, it is grown as half hardy annual in temperate climates. Plant Plectranthus argentatus in partial shade in moist but well-drained soil. Propagate Plectranthus argentatus by seed or semi-hardwood cuttings. No pruning is necessary. They are easy to maintain as they are pest-free and disease-free.

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