Doesn’t look purple to me…

Last month as some of you might recall I bought what was labeled a Agastache scrophularifolia “Purple Giant Hyssop” at the Native Plant Sale given each year three times a year by our Virginia Living Museum. All the plant species are grown on site for display purposes of local fauna. As you can see in the picture to the left this is what the plant should look like in full bloom. I found this picture online at the Connecticut Botanical Society website. Here are the specifications they listed for this plant:
• Family: Mint (Lamiaceae)
• Habitat: moist woods, thickets
• Height: 2-5 feet
• Flower size: 1/4 inch, in spikes 2-3 inches high
• Flower color: purple
• Flowering time: July to September
• Origin: native (endangered in Connecticut)
The specifications I was given for the plant when I bought it were similar except they added that the flowers were fragrant and the foliage licorice scented. And that if you deadheaded you would get a second flush of blooms. Anyhow the plant is blooming now and I posted the picture yesterday for Bloomin’ Tuesday. Except as you can see in the next photo it isn’t purple at all. This bloom is white, not purple or even lavender. Don’t you just hate when that happens? Now, I specifically bought the plant because it was suppose to be purple flowering. I’ve grown this before in my garden. It is a big bee magnet as well as butterflies and birds. I wasn’t able to find any information about the white that was helpful. In fact the pictures they had online didn’t look anything like my plant. Another thing I noticed is that the folliage is different. In the first picture the folliage is a deeper green while the leaves on mine are a bright lime color. It will be interesting to see what this plant looks like as it continues to bloom over the summer. Maybe their mistake is my blessing.


14 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mother Nature on July 9, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    I like your attitude.:)


  2. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 9, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    What is the old saying MN? When life gives you lemons, make lemonade…lol I need more white in my garden…that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. 🙂


  3. Posted by tina on July 9, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    Yes, that is a disappointment when plants are mislabeled or don’t cooperate. I too have some hyssy. Last year it was a beautiful blue, this year a dirty white or so. I wonder if this is common to the genus? Or environmental? We’ll see what it does next year. The white is nice though.


  4. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 9, 2008 at 2:22 pm

    Yes I was disappointed at first Tina, but after a second thought or look I figured I could use some more white in my garden. Especially since the corner I planted it in can be dark in the afternoon light. Maybe this lime foliage and white flower can shed some light over there…:)


  5. Posted by beckie on July 9, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    I wonder if you could take an almost spent bloom and so leaves back to them and ask if it was just mislabled or as Tina says ask about it reverting back from purple to white. At any rate they should be able to give you a little more info on what you do have. As you said-a ligher color will add some brightness to your shaded area. Here’s a thought-maybe it needs lots of sun to be purple? At any rate the picture you had on Blooming Tuesday showed a gorgeous plant!


  6. Posted by OhioMom on July 9, 2008 at 3:54 pm

    A surprise plant, how wonderful 🙂


  7. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 9, 2008 at 6:41 pm

    That’s an idea Beckie. I could try to get some information from the museum. They probably grow both white & purple and mislabled it by mistake. I’ve grown the purple kind, they don’t look anything alike, the foliage is darker in color. It is a pretty plant, isn’t it.

    Thanks Mom. That’s exactly how I feel about it. 🙂


  8. Posted by Susie on July 9, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    I always hate it when the plant it’s suppose to be isn’t. But like you said, maybe it will turn out to be a blessing!


  9. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 10, 2008 at 1:34 am

    Susie I have to say I’ve been fortunate and that hasn’t happened but a couple of times to me. It is still a pretty bloom so it’s not a complete loss.


  10. Posted by themanicgardener on July 10, 2008 at 5:20 am

    I’ve heard of people’s hair turning white overnight–


  11. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 10, 2008 at 8:01 pm

    I don’t think that is what happened here Kate. 🙂 But thanks for the suggestion!


  12. Posted by Mr. McGregor's Daughter on July 10, 2008 at 10:16 pm

    At least it’s the kind of plant that’s easily moved so you can put it where it will be best shown to advantage. What I really hate is mismarked shrubs & trees. By the time you find out, you’d need a professional tree hoe to move it.


  13. Posted by Perennial Gardener on July 11, 2008 at 3:40 am

    You got a point there MMD. I would hate to have to move something huge.


  14. Posted by Kathleen on July 12, 2008 at 5:20 am

    If it attracts bees, butterflies, etc., maybe it’s okay that it’s not purple?? Keep us posted how it goes.


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