Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Arabian Lilac, Fascination Vitex
Vitex trifolia f. purpurea 'Fascination'

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Vitex (VY-teks) (Info)
Species: trifolia f. purpurea
Cultivar: Fascination

6 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
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

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer

Grown for foliage

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

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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Thumbnail #1 of Vitex trifolia f. purpurea by Kell

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4 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive murgatroid On Jun 27, 2012, murgatroid from Rancho Cucamonga, CA wrote:

Velvety purple leaves, and small, inconspicuous creamy-lavender flowers. Very easy to grow, doesn't require too much water once established.

When I first planted it, it lost its leaves in the winter, but they returned with a vengeance in the spring and have not dropped since (even in windy Rancho Cucamonga CA, where it is exposed to very strong winds.)

It's a fast grower and you will need to prune it regularly. At Sea World in San Diego, they have some that are the size of small trees.

Positive Tucsonplantdabbler On Mar 30, 2011, Tucsonplantdabbler from Tucson, AZ wrote:

We had the coldest snap here in 30+ years in February-18.9 on my patio was the low for 2 days running. I thought for certain that my 3 years old Fascination in a 20" pot on the patio was a goner, but it has leaved out and is growing like a dream. I was one of the idiots that trimmed it back after the freeze so it is abbreviated, but shooting out all over the place and I'm confident that I'll have a good show this spring. I had to write since I hadn't seen too much info posted about this plant.

Positive janetdem On Aug 25, 2010, janetdem from Nicosia
Cyprus wrote:

I have planted Arabian Lilac in a flower bed on my roofgarden in Nicosia Cyprus. IT is exposed to full sun, high winds and high temperatures. This year has been an exceptionally hot summer with temperatures above 42C in the shade. This plant has survived beautifully, attracts a lot of bees and even shades the other plants around it. I strongly recommend it for those living in extreme weather conditions. p.s. Our winters are not very cold, there was only one night of frost but it did not trouble the plant. Also, although sometimes listed as deciduous, on my roofgarden it hardly lost any leaves
I love it so much that I am looking for plants that can behave similarly and have similar habits and form pls let me know if you are aware of any.

Neutral velmansia On Apr 24, 2010, velmansia from Antioch, TN wrote:

I planted the Arabian Vitex last year and it did quite well and flourished during the Summer but sadly, it did not make it through the cold months.

Positive rizard On Oct 13, 2009, rizard from guadalajara
Mexico wrote:

I currently have in my home near Guadalajara, Mexico, quite a big bush of Vitex trifolia Purpurea, also known as Arabian Lilac, its gorgeous with its beautiful gray-purple leaves (on the underside only), and it has grown to a big size of about 3 meters tall andit has now a big thick trunk, and I think is going to keep on growing more.
So I put this note to let you know that in Mexico, this great bushtree does grow remarkably well and it has adapted superbly to my countrys ambience.

Neutral artbytes On Aug 28, 2009, artbytes from San Diego, CA wrote:

The reason I chose the neutral rating is that I just planted the Vitex in June so haven't had them very long. So far they look beautiful and are doing well. I do find that in inland San Diego county, they need to be watered every day in the summer to prevent them from becoming wilted. This is the first year, though, so I think that might be expected.

Question About Pruning
I have a question about pruning as they grow. They seem to be developing a few very long branches that stick way out past the rest of the bush. Should these be trimmed to encourage the plant to keep a more compact, uniform shape? Thanks.


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

Tempe, Arizona
Tucson, Arizona
Antioch, California
Culver City, California
Norco, California
Orangevale, California
Rancho Cucamonga, California
San Diego, California
San Francisco, California
San Jose, California
San Leandro, California
West Sacramento, California
Boca Raton, Florida
Delray Beach, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
New Orleans, Louisiana
Westlake, Louisiana
Henderson, Nevada
Houston, Texas
Liberty Hill, Texas
Magnolia, Texas
Spring, Texas

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