Rotheca Species, Morning Kiss, Musical Note Plant, Witches Tongue

Rotheca microphylla

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rotheca (roth-EE-kuh) (Info)
Species: microphylla (my-kro-FIL-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Clerodendrum incisum
Synonym:Rotheca incisa



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 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)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual



Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Blooms all year

Blooms repeatedly

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds


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

Big Pine Key, Florida

Boca Raton, Florida

Brooksville, Florida

Clearwater, Florida

Deland, Florida(2 reports)

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Gainesville, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Lakeland, Florida

Melbourne, Florida

Mount Dora, Florida

New Smyrna Beach, Florida

Ocala, Florida

Oldsmar, Florida

Pompano Beach, Florida(2 reports)

Port Charlotte, Florida

Saint Cloud, Florida

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Sarasota, Florida(2 reports)

Tampa, Florida

West Palm Beach, Florida

Brunswick, Georgia

Pepeekeo, Hawaii

Austin, Texas(2 reports)

Beaumont, Texas

Galveston, Texas

Highlands, Texas

Houston, Texas(6 reports)

Humble, Texas

Mont Belvieu, Texas

Pearland, Texas

Rosenberg, Texas

Santa Fe, Texas

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 9, 2012, eliasastro from Athens,
Greece (Zone 10a) wrote:

Despite initial success with nice blooms, the first overwintering proved lethal. I kept it in a sheltered position, but some cold spells with lows close to freezing and cold days eventually killed it. I didn't expect it at all because most Clerodendrums are winter hardy here.


On Dec 1, 2010, julia42 from Pearland, TX wrote:

This is a beautiful plant when in bloom, and easy on the eyes when not in bloom as well. It's been pretty drought hardy for me, but it does seem to attract some kind of small ant-like insect when in bloom. The ants don't seem to harm the plant, but when they cover the pure white flowers, it's pretty unsightly. On the other hand, I think they may be helping a little with pollination - the groups of blooms with the most bugs seem to develop the most seed pods.

I've collected a few seed but have not tried to germinate them yet. I'm wondering if anyone has had success with a particular method. Should they be nicked or soaked?


On Jun 14, 2010, Kiyzersoze from Coral Springs, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

I have wanted this plant for some time. I finally got one at a plant sale but it wasn't marked and this place is known for having mismarked plants. I am happy to report that it is the correct plant and the blooms are what I hoped they would be. Really cool. My husband says they look more like golf clubs than musical notes. LOL!


On Jul 21, 2006, dmj1218 from west Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

This unusual native of Nigeria blooms repeatedly throughout the growing season over 2-3 days with masses of long white corolla tubes which resemble musical notes and then open with bright red stamens towards the end of the cycle. After flowering, they form a thick, white carpet on the ground all around them. This small shrub rapidly grows to a height and width of about 3. Like many African natives; it prefers rich, moist soil, and shade in the summer. In the winter, it prefers drier and sunnier conditions. It responds to a balanced fertilizer on a monthly basis during the growing season with an abundance of blooms. The Witches Tongue or Musical Notes plant is very easy to grow and recommended for growing in zones 9-11.