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Need help identifying this purple/black shrub

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Hello, this is a shade tolerant shrub with purple/black leaves and a pink spiked flower. Thanks!

post-605-0-99677100-1335455451.jpg

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Thank you but I don't think that is it...I can see the similarities though. It isn't an herb.

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Perilla's the first thing that comes to me, too. Perilla frutescens, a.k.a. shiso, one of the purple leaf varieties. The flowers are almost certainly mint family flowers so it is likely it has square stems, whatever it is. Some of the self sowers (naturalized all over the eastern U.S. and Canada, now) have lost the fragrance of the long-cultivated types.

 

But then the mint family's huge, nearly endless, and we can't see how tall this plant is or if it's woody. Is it woody? And how tall? Perilla's an annual, and rarely over 3' tall.

 

Might even be a coleus. That's a woody plant in zone 9 and warmer, and can hit 6'.

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Wondering what the answer was... occurs to me that we didn't ask where it is growing. I've seen coleus in a place where they can grow year round, develop into a 4' shrub. And this winter a friend who went to Hawaii asked me about how far back she could cut Persian shield, Strobilanthes, as it was 5-6 feet tall and growing wider, threatening the path in the yard.

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Hello Everyone, I still don't know what this plant is. I was inquiring for a friend of mine who saw them on her walk. I am waiting to get the details from her (from all the great questions you all asked). I hope she will ask the home owner next time she gets a chance. I will let you all know as soon as I know more. Thank you very much for your feedback. It is much appreciated.

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Some gardeners in the U.S. grow perilla as an ornamental, especially with the diverse variety plant breeders are developing - although classed as an herb, not all perilla is edible so one needs to know the variety they have...

 

We use a variety of perillas as filler in several area of our yard - near a septic tank, well head and water main - where planting anything of value would be fool-hardy perchance emergency repair is needed... It fills that bill nicely and since soil in those areas are dry and poor perilla doesn't get out of hand...

 

http://www.plant-bio...alse-coleus.php - photos of several types of perilla for comparison to the photo in the first post........

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