Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Silver Leafed Princess Flower
Tibouchina heteromalla

Family: Melastomataceae
Genus: Tibouchina (tib-OO-kee-nuh) (Info)
Species: heteromalla (het-er-oh-MAH-luh) (Info)

Synonym:Tibouchina grandifolia

One vendor has this plant for sale.

4 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 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:
Sun to Partial Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall
Mid Fall
Late Fall/Early Winter


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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There are a total of 18 photos.
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2 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive birdstalker On Jan 9, 2010, birdstalker from Hobe Sound, FL wrote:

Large, fuzzy, silver leaves are fun to touch and attractive even when no blooms are present. Excessive flowering spikes tend to render the plant top-heavy; have had to stake until blooming ceases and can be pruned. Takes great will power to cut back its healthy foliage for a fuller shape. Otherwise it grows quickly and can become spindly.

Just when you start to worry about its excessive dropping of leaves, it puts out new shoots at the base and comes right back.

Enjoys morning sun, afternoon shade in zone 9b.

A special addition to your yard since it is not overused or commonly found in chain garden centers.

Neutral rjuddharrison On Apr 12, 2005, rjuddharrison from Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

This plant is indeed finicky. In hotter places like Houston, it seems impossible to overwater during the summer. I have not had any success with fertilizer. I just leave them alone and keep them watered and mulched. I've had the best success in pots, which can be moved around to accommodate it's light requirements as the sun position changes during the seasons. It seems easy to propegate from branches, but I've never seen it go to seed. I noticed in Costa Rica it grows well in volcanic soil.

Positive jkom51 On Jul 11, 2003, jkom51 from Oakland, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

Everyone loves the leaves of this plant and wants to touch them! It seems a bit finicky, though; our coastal Northern CA (Sunset zone 17) is probably as far north/east as it will tolerate. Too much sun and the leaves burn slightly; too cold in winter and it just sits there unhappily. Leaf drop of up to 25% is considered normal with this plant. Leaves that die turn a spectacular orange and yellow before dropping off, so it's actually quite pretty while shedding leaves. An acid fertilizer is recommended. Flowers are not as spectacularly large as T. urvilleana, being smaller and held on spikes, but the color is just as intense and quite beautiful.


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

Casa Conejo, California
Manhattan Beach, California
Oakland, California
Richmond, California
San Francisco, California
San Leandro, California
Sebastopol, California
Simi Valley, California
Atlantis, Florida
Boca Del Mar, Florida
Bradenton, Florida
Bradley, Florida
Fairfield, Florida
Fort Mc Coy, Florida
Fountain, Florida
Hobe Sound, Florida
Hudson, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Jan Phyl Village, Florida
Ocoee, Florida
Riverview, Florida
Spring Hill, Florida
St Petersburg, Florida
Tampa, Florida
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Greenwell Springs, Louisiana
Houston, Texas

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