Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Plectranthus, False Boldo
Plectranthus barbatus

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Plectranthus (plek-TRAN-thus) (Info)
Species: barbatus (bar-BAY-tus) (Info)

Synonym:Coleus barbatus
Synonym:Plectranthus forskohlii
Synonym:Coleus forskohlii

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

7 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
Light Blue

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

Grown for foliage

Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From leaf cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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2 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive gloryspace On Apr 25, 2012, gloryspace from Winnipeg
Canada wrote:

Hello fellow Plant people!! I I am interested in growing Plectranthus Barbatus to harvest Forskolin. I've heard it is a wonderful plant that has many health related atributes. ie. colon,heart disease,convultions,spasmotic pain,urin track,Alzheimers...also uv skin resistance and proven it speeds up your matabilism! Weight loss is the biggy! Now my Questions are; 1. Can I grow it in Winnipeg as a perrenial or just annual? 2. Can I harvest it and ingest it for the said benefits? Have any of you heard anything about this plant? I know you can buy the supplement but I have not yet tried or have talked to anyone that has. Love to hear from you if you can tell me anything! Thanks! Joy

Neutral Mikananda On Dec 13, 2010, Mikananda from BKK
Thailand wrote:

This plant has some interesting properties:

though a little more digging is required (no pun intended) to know what part of plant has the most forskolin, this compound has a lot of nifty health benefits. heart disease, colon cancer (when mixed with other drug), body building and

Aruvedic uses are listed here, page 211


Positive smartseeds On Sep 11, 2010, smartseeds from Claremont, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

This giant Plectranthus is one of my favorite plants. It grows to 10' easily, has huge fuzzy leaves, makes a great backdrop for a salvia garden (though it will bloom in some shade) and is a perfect companion for Brugmansias and Iochromas (which overshadow most other plants and need the same conditions - warmth and partial sun).

Blooms are an intense periwinkle, lots of them clustered on 10" stalks, very showy, though the plant is worth growing on its own.

Turns out this plant is being studied worldwide for various medicinal properties, everything from cancer treatment to antihistimines. I just thought it was cool looking.

A coleus relative, it grows easily from cuttings if you can find them, as well as from seed. I've planted this big boy in every garden I've designed, but it does need to be protected from the slightest frost. Up against a wall or in a protected corner is a good bet. One hit of 32 degrees and it's mush.

Tolerates full sun, low water, abysmal neglect, is very impressive, though it might overpower delicate cottage gardens. Native to Brazil, it does fine here in dry Southern California (except that pesky intolerance to being frozen). I LOVE this plant.

Neutral macybee On Sep 28, 2007, macybee from Deer Park, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Per Annies annuals.
Oh, this is a fun plant for us lucky folks living in our mild winter climate. It's big, honking, perennial specimen plant, totally easy and fast, to about 5' tall. Related to Coleus, it has large, soft, toothed leaves held on thick, upright, branching stems. From Fall to late Spring, it bears large (10"), upright spikes of rich, purple-blue, long lasting blooms. The flowers emerge from fascinating buds that look like condensed "Chinese Houses." A must for a tropical garden and would be lovely paired with Brugmansia samguineus, the bright orange & scarlet "Angel's Trumpet." With rich, composty soil and average water, it will reach full height in less than a year.
Sun and part shade.
Zones 9-11


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

Clayton, California
Fairfield, California
Fallbrook, California
Pomona, California
Boca Raton, Florida
Oakland, Tennessee

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