Persicaria Species, Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, Oriental Pepper, Prince's Feather

Persicaria orientalis

Family: Polygonaceae
Genus: Persicaria (per-sih-KAR-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: orientalis (or-ee-en-TAY-liss) (Info)
Synonym:Polygonum orientale



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Unknown - Tell us

Foliage Color:



36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)


Not Applicable

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are good for cutting

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

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

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

Seed Collecting:

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


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

Anniston, Alabama

Belmont, California

Clovis, California

Lafayette, California

Long Beach, California

Menifee, California

Richmond, California

San Anselmo, California

San Jose, California

Santa Barbara, California

Stockton, California

Denver, Colorado

Marietta, Georgia

Boise, Idaho

Washington, Indiana

Oskaloosa, Iowa

Barbourville, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky

Northeast Harbor, Maine

Billerica, Massachusetts

Brown City, Michigan

Dearborn Heights, Michigan

Tawas City, Michigan

Warren, Michigan

Little Falls, Minnesota

Jersey City, New Jersey

Buffalo, New York

Ogdensburg, New York

Wallkill, New York

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Polkton, North Carolina

Sandusky, Ohio

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Houston, Pennsylvania

Lititz, Pennsylvania

Mercer, Pennsylvania

Lenoir City, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

Kurten, Texas

Wichita Falls, Texas

Logan, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

Springdale, Utah

Kalama, Washington

Kendall, Washington

Maple Falls, Washington

Spangle, Washington

Union, Washington

Green Bay, Wisconsin

South Milwaukee, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 21, 2017, AgastChe from Tulsa, OK wrote:

Mine was a dug-up gift from a friend last summer. I planted behind some daylilies and phlox of various pinks and purples. pretty dangling over and blowing in the breeze. I saved seed heads and dried, then sowed in other places in the fall. It came up fine and is growing now in April. Not as invasive as the lovely monarda nearby!! I will sprinkle Preen around them next year.


On Apr 27, 2015, lokidog from Logan, UT wrote:

This is a great plant for adding pizazz to a garden. It's large but does not take up all it's space - it's airy. The flowers are great in arrangements too - and if cut it's puts out more flowers. It's actually a wetland plant in it's native habitat - so does very well in or near ponds (not in deep water, but near the edge). But it's not unhappy with normal garden soil moisture either.


On Sep 18, 2014, elfenqueen from East Tawas, MI (Zone 5b) wrote:

Mine have reseeded from east to west along the south side of my pond. I transplanted a few with no problems, even moving some to the front yard. They did grow in the shade, but remained smaller plants. The one's in moist ground, with the most sun.... grew 7-9' as did the ones transferred into a loose mounded, top soil hill, in full sun. I love this old fashioned plant which I can recall seeing at age 4, it made a lasting impression so strong that I knew some day I would have to know more about it. I do hope it attracts cardinals, I have had a small family for the past few winter and I strive to make my yard a Certified Wildlife Habitat.


On Jun 5, 2013, Dean48089 from Warren, MI (Zone 6b) wrote:

If you like having cardinals in your yard, this is the plant to have! In late summer I have had as many as twenty cardinals at a time fighting over the KMOTGG plants around the patio. They love the seeds and I have never had problems with seedlings coming up beyond the patio area where I grow them (which means the cardinals must be digesting those seeds).

I can't imagine where they got the height range of only 36-48 inches. That must have been from measuring a plant that came up in the crack of a driveway. Even without additional (non-rain) water the plants routinely get five feet tall. With TLC they can get up to eight feet tall. This is also a great plant for companion planting with hyacinth beans, morning glories, and other annual vines.


On Jan 25, 2011, kobwebz from columbia, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Love this plant too. Not invasive at all here in zone 6a, does self sow but only here and there have had it for many years. Mine get upwards of 6 feet tall and hold their own with out staking.


On Dec 16, 2010, sherman99 from Menifee, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

love the fragrance!


On Sep 25, 2010, ansonfan from Polkton, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I really like this plant. The blooms are still hanging on here in late September and keep their color for a long time. Mine is in the shade of a tree for the afternoon and has still done well.


On Jul 6, 2010, huckiefinn from Mequon, WI wrote:

Whoa Nelly! This thing needs watching! One plant in five years sent us searching for the Round-up. It is such a prolific self sowing flower that "invasive" would be an understatement. It is quite attractive and will literally grow anywhere there is sun but unfotunately, it is VERY hard to control. Birds carry off the seeds as do small ground dwelling mammals thus insuring the plant's proliferation into undesirable areas. No matter how well we monitor it somehow it bursts back someplace new every year not even fazed by severe winters!


On Apr 21, 2007, subuch from Lafayette, CA wrote:

I'll just add another positive to this lovely plant. The blossoms have a gentle yet delightful fragrance that is carried in the air when a warm wind blows.


On Nov 6, 2004, Compost_it from Maple Falls, WA wrote:

Started growing this in a food bank garden 10 years ago to draw the eye. It is a spectacular display for back drop or above a fence. A fun plant to watch grow; it's little collars, the flower presentation, the flowers and seeds side by side and of course it's size. It volunteers and is easily pulled where not wanted. Transplants without missing a beat with a little B-1 drink. This fall I shook the clusters of flower chains into a large tub for seed just before the first strong storm. What a crop! The better the location (sun) and soil, the larger and more dramatic the plant. But in my shady home garden scraped sub-soil, it still reaches 6 feet with just drinks of weed tea. This is a great plant. Try it, you'll like it!


On Oct 1, 2004, Tree_Climber from Brown City, MI (Zone 5a) wrote:

I think this plant is a beauty. Wonderful to see the tall willowy stems loaded with pink blossoms swaying in the wind.

I never had any luck starting them from seed because I didn't realize they had to go through a cold period. My suggestion to anyone sharing seed is to make sure you mark that on the packet or send them already chilled.

I also grow a variegated variety of this plant. It is a bit shorter and has a softer pink blossom. The leaves have lots of white on them, and are extremely soft .... like Lambs ear. I've never seen seed available commercially for this variety, but you can buy seedlings.


On Jul 26, 2004, pixelmill from Sunnyvale, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Luther Burbank Garden in Santa Rosa, CA has a 10ft. specimen in full bloom.


On Aug 30, 2003, castor_bean1 from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5a) wrote:

Seed requires cold treatment to germinate. If someone gives you seed, just leave it outside in the shed overwinter.


On Jun 28, 2003, bovinekdg wrote:

An older friend gave me this seed and said it grew in his grandma's garden. He called it Lady Finger. It reseeds itself profusely! It can be a problem because every seed seems to germinate--any place it falls. It is showy, a good backdrop for shorter plants and also makes shade where needed. It does pull easily when young. My farmer husband thinks it is a giant smartweed and is afraid it will get loose in his fields.


On Oct 22, 2002, irislove from Withee, WI (Zone 4b) wrote:

Its a very sturdy plant and I have had it get 6 feet tall plus. Its not hardy in zone 4 but it does reseed itself very plentiful. Its bloom time is usually late late summer. I really like this plant as a back ground plant,hanging over my 5 foot fence.


On Aug 12, 2001, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

This is a tall annual knotweed that was an old-fashioned favorite in cottage gardens. Its thick sturdy stems can grow up to 5 feet or even taller in rich soil. The beady, rose-colored flowers are born on drooping panicles and last well until frost. It makes an attractive backdrop behind shorter plants.