Plectranthus Species, Blue Spur Flower, Candlestick Plant, Speckled Spur Flower, Wild Sage

Plectranthus ciliatus

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Plectranthus (plek-TRAN-thus) (Info)
Species: ciliatus (sil-ee-ATE-us) (Info)
Synonym:Plectranthus natalensis



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade


Grown for foliage



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


12-18 in. (30-45 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Pale Pink

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Alameda, California

Clayton, California

Oakland, California

San Diego, California

San Francisco, California

San Jose, California

Simi Valley, California

Longwood, Florida

Canyon Lake, Texas

Bremerton, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 30, 2012, suguy from Simi Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

I use this plant regularly in my landscape projects.
It does best in a cool, shaded, moist site out of direct sun.

Great in containers, too.


On Jan 9, 2007, terrelevin from Saugerties, NY wrote:

I received a large plant from a neighbor, but she didn't know what it was. I found out it was Speckled Spur, P. ciliatus. It grew gorgeous spikes of white flowers with little speckles all over. The stem is very red, leaves are hairy. It grows prodigeously. I love to clean it up because it has a very nice odor as well as I remove old leaves. It's very water hungry. It looks great in my sunroom on a shelf so it can swoop down almost to the floor.


On May 17, 2004, DaveH from San Francisco, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

Plectranthus ciliatus also makes a wonderful groundcover, and looks great year round in my garden in San Francisco. It also thrives in deep shade, although you may not get any flowers.


On Apr 28, 2004, HollyBerry wrote:

I received this plant from a co-worker, she ahd left it in direct sunlight, and it was dark burgundy with very long legs. I didn't know what kind of plant it was!! I took a cutting to a florist, and she said it was a wandering jew due to the dark purple leaves. I didn't beleive her upon seeing a real wandering jew. Then I went somewhere else, and she told me exactly what it was, and how the dark purple was a pigment created by the plant to protect it from the direct sunlight. Also, the long legs are from too much sun as well. Since, I have cut legs off and dipped them in rooting powder to create a troop of them, and the plant is recovering marvelously.


On Nov 15, 2003, jkom51 from Oakland, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

I have two of these plants growing in partial sun in coastal Northern CA. I had bought them for the foliage and was astonished by the beauty of the flower spikes. My other plectranthus varieties have insignificant flowers and I was unprepared for how gorgeous this is as a flowering plant. Did not realize it was an invasive until I read it here, but that's not unusual for plectranthus which are all highly vigorous as a family.

The flower show has lasted for over a month. Highly recommended!


On Oct 12, 2003, xyris from Sebring, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

Although it is listed as hardy only in zones 10 and 11, my several plants of this Plectranthus (easy to propagate from cuttings!) have been living in Bremerton, Washington (zone 8b-9a) for four years now. They do get some dieback in hard freezes, but have resprouted each time (so far!). I have some of them in more exposed situations this year, so I will see if those come through the winter as well as those that have more protection.


On Oct 18, 2002, artsea from Old Lyme, CT wrote:

This a truly spectacular plant - but you have to wait until fall for the big show. I used it in large mixed planters on my terrace where it acted as a simple background for the floriferous hot weather plants. It has Coleus-like olive green/reverse burgundy leaves and burgundy stems. Despite a drought filled season it didn't blink - and no insect bothered it. By late September when most of the summer show was fading the Plectranthus had taken over and filled the pot almost 3ft tall & 3 -5 ft across with its foliage and THEN it burst into a mass of large terminal lilac blue flowers. While the Lilac fragrance is missing, the size & form of the flowers are similar. The color is magnificent with New England fall foliage. It is only hardy to zone 10 or 11 thank goodness for it is considered an i... read more


On May 22, 2002, Sugar_fl from montgomery, AL (Zone 7b) wrote:

I only got this plant recently & so far I am very pleased with it. It makes a beautiful hanging basket.
The under leaf is as pretty as the top with it's deep wine color. It sounds very easy to propagate by cuttings.