Advanced Search Filters

Plant Type
Hardiness Zone
Heat Zone
Sunset Zone
Function
Sun Exposure
Soil Moisture
Water Requirement

CUPHEA hyssopifolia

Image of Cuphea hyssopifolia

Forest & Kim Starr

Family

Lythraceae

Botanical Name

CUPHEA hyssopifolia

Plant Common Name

False Heather, Mexican Heather

General Description

Commonly known as Mexican heather, elfin herb, or Hawaiian heather, this tropical plant is a small, bushy, evergreen subshrub with shiny, dark green leaves borne in horizontal sprays that create a fine-textured appearance. The flowers are produced mainly in summer and fall, but also appear sporadically throughout the year and may be in shades of purple-violet, pink or white.

Best grown in dappled shade, this Mexican native will tolerate full sun, especially if provided regular water. Plant it in moist, very well-drained, fertile soil. Reliably hardy in Zones 9 and warmer, it may die back to the ground and reshoot after hard frosts. Used as an edging or border plant, massed as a groundcover or in containers.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    9 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    8"-24" / 20.3cm - 61.0cm (20)

  • Width

    12"-32" / 30.5cm - 81.3cm (28)

  • Bloom Time

    Indeterminate

  • Native To

    Mexico, Central America

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Clay, Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Cushion/Mound-forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White, Pink, Light Pink, Lavender, Violet

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Light Green, Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Dark Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Dark Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    Yes

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Bedding Plant, Container, Edging, Foundation, Groundcover, Hanging Basket, Mixed Border

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    Yes