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Marcus, Joseph A.
Stachys coccinea Ortega
Scarlet betony, Scarlet hedge-nettle, Texas betony
USDA Symbol: stco
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
The stout, square stems of scarlet hedge-nettle or Texas betony rise to 3 ft. or more and are lined with pair of dark-green leaves becoming smaller up the stem. The inflorescence is an interrupted spike of two-lipped, bright-red, tubular flowers. A stout, erect, leafy plant, covered with soft hairs, with scarlet bilaterally symmetrical flowers in whorls at intervals in a spike at top of 4-sided stem.
Its scarlet color distinguishes this species from other western plants of its genus, which are pink or purplish. If cultivated, it should be grown from seed. Stachys plants have no stinging hairs, as do true nettles, but resembles nettles in other ways, especially before flowering. In the Old World, some grow near hedges and are known as hedge-nettles.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Red
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
AZ , NM , TX Native Distribution:
W. TX to s. AZ & adjacent Mex. Native Habitat:
Moist crevices of steep slopes & canyons, Found in moist crevices and steep, stony places in the mountains of the Trans-Pecos. Moist, well-drained sand, loam, clay. USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist soils.
Conditions Comments: Texas betony has aromatic foliage and a tremendous bloom show. The heaviest blooms are in early spring, but Texas betony continues to display vivid scarlet flowers throughout the season. Makes a good groundcover for shady places.
BenefitUse Wildlife: Flowers attract hummingbirds.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Flowers: yes
Fragrant Foliage: yes
Nectar Source: yes
Deer Resistant: High
PropagationDescription: Not Available
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes
Mr. Smarty Plants says
Native plants for shady small spaces in Houston, TX
June 18, 2006
What are the best plants and flowers to plant in small spaces in an urban area in Houston, Texas? I have several flower beds that are 3 foot wide and 10-12 foot long that get half day sun. The area...
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Record Modified: 2009-02-21
Research By: TWC Staff, LAS