Gardening
in Tucson, Phoenix,
and Southern California

Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, and Southern California

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Hyptis emoryi: Desert Lavender

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Description
Form: Multi-stemmed shrub.
Leaf retention: Evergreen but frost-deciduous. Dies to ground in severe cold but usually grows back in spring.
Growth rate: Rapid.
Mature Size: 4-10' high and wide, depending on frost.
Flowers: Tiny, clustered, blue to purple.
Bloom: Fall, winter and spring.
Fruit: Inconspicuous seed.
Leaves: Oval, hairy, green, rounded-toothed margins, become smaller and grayer without water, edible, strong lavender scent. Scent is released by touching plant. Can be used to flavor tea.
Stems: No thorns.
Wildlife: Attracts butterflies and bees.
Toxic / Danger: No.
Origin: California, Nevada, Arizona and Mexico.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 8-10.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: Full sun.
Water once established: Monthly. Supplemental water speeds growth but can make plant leggy. Stop watering six weeks before first frost in fall or winter to avoid spurring new growth that will be killed by frost.
Soil: Well drained, dry, low organic content, pH 6.1-7.5 (slightly acidic to neutral).
Prune: In late winter, prune to maintain shape. Cut to ground if hard freeze has arrived.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Seed.
Uses: Ornamental. Herbal.

Comments
A member of the mint family. The butterfly is an Ilavia Hairstreak (Satyrium ilavia).



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