Plant of the month: October
Elsholtzia stauntonii is from the dry open hill sides of Central and East Asia. There are 35 Species of Elsholtzia ranging from annuals through perennials to semi-evergreen and deciduous shrubs – none of which should be confused with the Eschscholzia californica the Californian poppy! Some species of Elsholtzia are believed to help cure colds and fever and are used by Chinese herbalists. The plant is grown for its slender tubular purple flowers which appear in late autumn and its aromatic foliage. It is low maintenance in a sunny well drained site, only requiring a prune back to a low permanent framework when the buds are starting the swell in spring.