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Pink Turtlehead, Lyon's Turtlehead 'Hot Lips'

Chelone lyonii

Family: Scrophulariaceae (skrof-yoo-larr-ee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Chelone (kay-LOH-nee) (Info)
Species: lyonii (ly-ON-ee-eye) (Info)
Cultivar: Hot Lips
View this plant in a garden



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


12-15 in. (30-38 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade

Partial to Full Shade



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From softwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

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


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

Brookfield, Connecticut

Prospect, Connecticut

Bear, Delaware

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware

Pensacola, Florida

Lawrenceville, Georgia

Lincoln, Illinois

Machesney Park, Illinois

Mount Prospect, Illinois

Waukegan, Illinois

Westmont, Illinois

Fishers, Indiana

Granger, Indiana

Greenville, Indiana

Litchfield, Maine

Pownal, Maine

Crofton, Maryland

Bridgewater, Massachusetts

Lexington, Massachusetts

Wayland, Massachusetts

Dearborn Heights, Michigan

Garden City, Michigan

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Howell, Michigan

Fulda, Minnesota

Hopkins, Minnesota

Kasota, Minnesota

Rochester, Minnesota

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Denville, New Jersey

Brockport, New York

Croton On Hudson, New York

Utica, New York

Yonkers, New York

Cincinnati, Ohio

Galena, Ohio

Hamilton, Ohio (2 reports)

Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Gilbertsville, Pennsylvania

Honesdale, Pennsylvania

Lawrenceville, Pennsylvania

Milford, Pennsylvania

Leesburg, Virginia

Mc Lean, Virginia

Graham, Washington

Seattle, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 28, 2015, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

I have one big clump of this cultivar next to the east side of my house with morning full sun and afternoon shade that is doing well. It is growing in moist and sort of gooey clay soil next to an Inkberry Holly bush. It is very reliable and stands up well, at least when not in sites of strong winds. I have not had to stake it in about 6 years. Bumblebees will crawl into the flowers. It self sows just a little bit around. Easy to dig up and divide if wanting to propagate it. I believe it can be left undisturbed indefinitely. Native to the southern US.


On Aug 30, 2010, ms_greenjeans from Hopkins, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

This is a great, trouble-free, colorful shade plant. It blooms at a time when there isn't a lot going on, and the flowers are interesting and slightly-out-of-the-ordinary. The clumps expand each year but don't appear to be invasive; the stems are sturdy and don't require staking. The foliage is always glossy and nice looking. I haven't seen any pest or disease issues whatsoever, and the rabbits seem to leave it alone. I don't fertilize these at all and only water when it's extremely hot and dry. They even tolerate being under a gigantic cedar tree in the vicinity of black walnut trees. Definitely a winner.


On Feb 28, 2010, VtRoots6440 from Montpelier, VT wrote:

Found bunches of wild white/pink tinge Tur. Hds in wetland behind our camp; grabbed a couple & they didn't transplant well. Was early fall at Gren. Hs. & saw huge Pink Turtle Heads on sale for $4. a gallon pot 8 yrs. ago. But the bees struggling to get into those bright pink "snap-dragon type" blossoms had me grinning, and hooked. However, that single plant has been divided 4 times in those 8 yrs. as it grows huge within two yrs. So like my white bleeding & pink bleeding hearts, I've divided many times for my home & camp gardens & given away many of same. Both prefer afternoon shade, but my T.Hds. still bloom like crazy on the hot front garden, but are well watered when home from summer camp once a wk. And the bee "bump & grind" for this late summer plant still makes me laugh. It's a fun-l... read more


On Jun 9, 2008, grik from Saint Paul, MN wrote:

This plant really comes into its own late in the season when not much else good is going on in my garden. The foliage is deep green and looks nice all year. It slowly spreads when its happy but is by no means aggressive. This is a great plant.


On May 18, 2008, mrickett from Lawrenceville, GA wrote:

Great plant! It is attractive to hummingbirds, butterlies and bees. I have three plants that are several years old. They maintain a nice shape and do not fall over in wind or rain. The foliage is very attractive.


On Oct 30, 2007, ifonly from Brookfield, CT wrote:

This is a terrific plant - glossy dark green leaves first attracted me. Flowers are great & last a long time. Mine grow in full blasting sun, and the soil is NOT consistently moist, but rather dry. Altogether a great late bloomer, good with cotinus Velvet Cloak, deep blue/purple aconitum, and shasta daisy Becky.


On Apr 12, 2007, terrelevin from Saugerties, NY wrote:

I saw this shrub at a garden shop and watched as bumble bees 'forced' their way into the blossom. All you could see of the bee was its rear end. It was funny and gorgeous all at the same time. I knew then, I had to have this plant.