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Plant Profile: Balm-Leaved Red Deadnettle (Lamium orvala)

SONY DSCAlso called balm-leaved archangel,, this clump forming herbaceous perennial is native to central and eastern Europe. The heart-shaped leaves are up to six inches long, softly hairy and have serrated margins. Whorls of coppery pink to purple flowers are carried on spikes 1.5” long in spring and summer. Each flower is hooded and two lipped, with delicate markings in the throat. The flowers are often somewhat obscured by the leaves but the plant is worth growing for its foliage. It is an excellent ground cover for shady borders or with shrubs and is not invasive.

Lamium orvala flType: Herbaceous perennial

Bloom: Spikes 1.5” long with whorls of coppery pink to purple flowers in spring

Size: 24” H x 12” W

Light: Part to full shade

Soil: Moderately fertile, moist, well-drained

Hardiness: Zones 4-8

Care: Cut to the ground in early spring

Pests and Diseases: None of significance

Propagation: Division in autumn or early spring

Companion plants: Underplant with roses and other shrubs; spring bulbs’; ferns

Outstanding Selections:
‘Alba’ (white flowers)
‘Silva’ (leaves with broad central stripe)