Helichrysum, Licorice Plant, Hottentot Tea, Trailing Licorice, Dwarf Licorice Plant 'Silver Mist'


Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Helichrysum (hel-ih-KRY-sum) (Info)
Cultivar: Silver Mist
Synonym:Helichrysum petiolare
Synonym:Helichrysum minus
Synonym:Helichrysum petiolare minus
Synonym:Plecostachys serpyllifolia



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Grown for foliage


This plant is resistant to deer

Foliage Color:



18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


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)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Pollen may cause allergic reaction

Bloom Color:



Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:


Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


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

Yarnell, Arizona

Clayton, California

Fairfield, California

Huntington Beach, California

Martinez, California

Santa Ana, California

Sebastopol, California

Stockton, California

Plant City, Florida

Pompano Beach, Florida

Venice, Florida

Rigby, Idaho

Milton, Massachusetts

Elephant Butte, New Mexico

Holmes, New York

Woodstock, New York

Raleigh, North Carolina

Glenpool, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Clarksville, Pennsylvania

Summerville, South Carolina

Houston, Texas

Duvall, Washington

Ocean Park, Washington

Raymond, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 2, 2016, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Here in New England, this is a good plant for containers and bedding.

In California, it's naturalized. CAL-IPC has listed it as invasive of natural habitat, and is urging gardeners to grow something else in its place.


On Aug 2, 2011, marykins from Raymond, WA wrote:

Love this plant as an annual here in zone 8. Wonder if it can be overwinter as an indoor plant & set out again in April- May?? The cuttings root so easily!


On May 6, 2009, ccilch from Venice, FL wrote:

I am currently using this plant in outdoor planters and since it is doing so well, I am going to use it between paver blocks in a part of my garden that needs some filler. The silver grey color will go well with the pavers.


On Nov 19, 2007, Lizziewriter from Holmes, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is a pretty plant that grew well in my herb garden this year. I too had voracious caterpillars that turned into (I forget what, something pretty) and then the plant grew back with no problem. I did, however, originally believe it to be an herbal/edible, and since it is poisonous I will not be replanting it. Also, I am grateful that it is an annual/tender perennial, as it grew very quickly and would have probably taken over that half of my herb garden.


On Jan 29, 2003, Heels from Newton, NJ wrote:

I plant for nature as well as myself. This plant was covered with caterpillars which consumed my plants. I was surprised to have the plants rebound in a few weeks healthy and robust. The larvae turned out to be Painted Lady butterflies.


On Jan 27, 2003, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

This "Licorice Plant" can be grown from seed (most of the perennial varieties can only be propagated vegetatively.)

Some sources list this as H. microphylla, but other information indicates that is not correct.


On Jan 22, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

This plant makes a wonderful foliage accent in containers. It is extra-easy to propagate. As unwanted growth is pinched off to maintain the plant's shape, it can be inserted into a pot where it will root without any special care. Since flowering is insignificant, plants should have buds pinched off as they form, making the plant even bushier.