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PlantFiles: Perilla
Perilla 'Magilla Vanilla'

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Perilla (per-IL-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Magilla Vanilla

4 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade
Light Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested
Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:
Light Blue

Bloom Time:
Late Summer/Early Fall

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Suitable for growing in containers

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Click thumbnail
to view:

By Moby
Thumbnail #1 of Perilla  by Moby

By carrielamont
Thumbnail #2 of Perilla  by carrielamont

By carrielamont
Thumbnail #3 of Perilla  by carrielamont

By skaz421
Thumbnail #4 of Perilla  by skaz421

By MotherNature4
Thumbnail #5 of Perilla  by MotherNature4


4 positives
No neutrals
1 negative

Gardeners' Notes:

Negative coriaceous On Apr 1, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

I used to be partial to the purple-leaf strain, but after growing it once in pots I found it turned into a persistent annual weed. After more than a decade, I'm still weeding it out of the beds. It's very aggressive and outcompetes many perennials.

A pretty plant, but there are far too many other pretty plants that are less work. I'll never plant this again deliberately in any garden.

Coleus makes an excellent substitute, unless you want to eat it.

This species is highly toxic to many animals, including horses, cattle, goats, rats, mice, and hamsters. It is responsible for fatal livestock poisonings when it invades pasturage.

This plant's invasive behavior has alarmed many organizations concerned with preserving natural areas, including the US National Park Service and the US Forest Service. It has been reported as invasive of natural habitat in 8 states.

Positive Wrightgardens On Feb 2, 2009, Wrightgardens from Plantersville, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

The breeder has dropped the plant from production as of May 2008. Future is unknown?

Positive Allison_FL On Jan 16, 2007, Allison_FL from Dunedin, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

Reading up on this plant I will have to say it is more Tropicals/Tender Perennials
At least in the warmer zones . Zones 8 and up can take cuttings or bring plant into GH or homes for winter.
Also I feel it grows well in Full Sun / Sun Partial Shade.
It is also in the same family as the Coleus family and grows and roots just like Coleus.
I am Blessed to have mine given to me by Steve. Thanks Steve ! It also had a slight sweet scent to it .
We have the same Coleuos plants growing now threw five years in the ground hope this does as well. !

Positive skaz421 On Jan 14, 2007, skaz421 from Wesley Chapel, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

I've been growing Vanillas for a couple of years. They seem to do better in sunshine. They are extremely easy to propagate - put a broken branch in soil, and before long you have a new plant. Keep them short, until they fill out; otherwise, they develop brown spots on the creamy parts of the leaves.

Positive carrielamont On Aug 27, 2006, carrielamont from Milton, MA (Zone 6a) wrote:

This is my first year growing foliage plants! I love Vanilla although I see now that there are other Perillas also. It sits in semi-shade in a pot with sweet potato vines getting watered several times a week and it just keeps growing. We're both happy (the Perilla and I).


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Plantersville, Alabama
Bartow, Florida
Dunedin, Florida
Niceville, Florida
Zephyrhills, Florida
Milton, Massachusetts
Kingston, Oklahoma
Kilgore, Texas
Christiansted, Virgin Islands

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