Solenostemon scutellarioides – Coleus

Solenostemon scutellarioides - Coleus, Common Coleus, Painted Nettle

Solenostemon scutellarioides - Coleus, Common Coleus, Painted Nettle

Solenostemon scutellarioides - Coleus, Common Coleus, Painted Nettle

Solenostemon scutellarioides - Coleus, Common Coleus, Painted Nettle (flowers)

Plant Name

Scientific Name: Solenostemon scutellarioides

Synonyms: Coleus blumei, C. pumilus, C. scutellarioides, Ocimum scutellarioides, Plectranthus blumei, P. scutellarioides

Common Names: Coleus, Common Coleus, Painted Nettle

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial

Growth Habit: Herb/Forb

Hawaii Native Status: Introduced. This naturalized ornamental garden plant, tropical foliage plant, and houseplant is native to Southeast Asia and Malesia.

Flower Color: Purple to violet

Height: Up to 3 feet (0.9 m) tall

Description: The flowers are on tall, slender, branched inflorescences at the stem tips. The individual flowers are small, tubular, and 2-lipped with a broad upper lip and a boat-shaped lower lip. The leaves are opposite, toothed or lobed, oblong to egg-shaped, and either solid green or more commonly variegated with red, pink, orange, yellow, lime green, purple, brown, or creamy white. The stems are semi-succulent, upright, branched, and square in cross section.

Here in Hawaii, Coleus is a common garden plant and also grows wild at the partly shady edges of disturbed wet to mesic (moderately wet) forests at low elevations. The plants can spread by seed or stem cuttings.

Classification

Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae – Mint family
Genus: Solenostemon Thonn. – solenostemon
Species: Solenostemon scutellarioides (L.) Codd – common coleus

More About This Plant

Hawaii County Distribution Map