Plant DetailShow Menu

Lovely Browallia Browallia speciosa

Phonetic Spelling
bro-WAL-lee-ah speh-see-OH-sah
Description

The Amethyst Flower is a tropical flowering herbaceous perennial that has purplish-blue flowers with white centers and medium green ovate-shaped leaves. The plant has a rounded or cushion-like habit and grows up to 2 feet tall and 2 feet wide. It is frequently grown in the United States as a warm-weather annual. It is winter hardy in zones 9-11. The plant is a member of the Solanaceae or Nightshade Family. Other common names include Bush Violet, Browallia, Lovely Browallia, and Sapphire Flower. There are several varieties of plants to choose from. The Bell Series are best used in hanging plants. The Starlight Series is a more compact plant. The Troll Series is denser and best used as a container plant.

The Amethyst Flower is a native of Central and South America including Columbia, Costa Rica, Panama, and Peru.

The genus name, Browallia, honors the Swedish theologian, botanist, and physicist, Johannes Browallis. The species name, speciosa, means "showy."

This plant prefers warm weather, sunlight with afternoon shade, and evenly moist, well-drained soil.  Over-watering or over-fertilizing will promote foliage at the expense of flowers. It needs a space of at least 6-8 inches since it generally spreads 1 foot, but it can sometimes spread up to 3 feet. The Amethyst Flower is tolerant of sand, loam, and clay soils with a somewhat acidic pH. It is moderately fast-growing and requires very little maintenance. Pinching back the terminal growth will encourage a bushy appearance. It is propagated by seeds.

The leaves are 2 to 4 inches long, medium green, and ovate in shape with pointed tips. The flowers are up to 2 inches wide, star-like, and tubular with 5 lobes. They appear on long glabrous pedicles. The blooms are purplish-blue with a white center. The plant typically blooms from late spring to fall. 

The Amethyst Flower may be grown in a container or hanging basket, either indoors or outdoors. They are also recommended for flower beds, borders, mass plantings, woodlands, and rock gardens. Hummingbirds are attracted to their lovely flowers.

Caution:

The Amethyst Flower is toxic to cats and dogs if ingested. Symptoms of poisoning include excessive drooling, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, slow heart rate, and death sometimes may occur.

Diseases, Pest, and Other Problems:

The Amethyst Flower has no serious diseases or pests.  Pests such as aphids, thrips, spider mites, leafhoppers, and whiteflies may occur.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Bells'
    Trailing plant with purple, blue, or white shaded flowers--good for hanging baskets
  • 'Blue Bells'
    Blue flowers, plant height 1-12 inches
  • 'Major'
    Erect stems 18-24 inches long, violet blue flowers with white throats
  • 'Silver Bells'
    White flowers
  • 'Starlight'
    Compact, dense plant with white, purple, and blue flowers
  • 'Troll'
    Dense, rounded, compact plant--good for containers
'Bells', 'Blue Bells', 'Major', 'Silver Bells', 'Starlight', 'Troll'
Tags:
#purple#annuals#fall flowers#white flowers#purple flowers#blue flowers#afternoon shade#spring flowers#fall interest#hanging baskets#violet flowers#summer flowers#annual flowers#rock gardens#border planting#partial shade tolerant#container plants
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Bells'
    Trailing plant with purple, blue, or white shaded flowers--good for hanging baskets
  • 'Blue Bells'
    Blue flowers, plant height 1-12 inches
  • 'Major'
    Erect stems 18-24 inches long, violet blue flowers with white throats
  • 'Silver Bells'
    White flowers
  • 'Starlight'
    Compact, dense plant with white, purple, and blue flowers
  • 'Troll'
    Dense, rounded, compact plant--good for containers
'Bells', 'Blue Bells', 'Major', 'Silver Bells', 'Starlight', 'Troll'
Tags:
#purple#annuals#fall flowers#white flowers#purple flowers#blue flowers#afternoon shade#spring flowers#fall interest#hanging baskets#violet flowers#summer flowers#annual flowers#rock gardens#border planting#partial shade tolerant#container plants
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Browallia
    Species:
    speciosa
    Family:
    Solanaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    The plant is used in Columbia as a medicine. Natives chew the leaves and then packed them around a decaying tooth to relieve a toothache.
    Life Cycle:
    Annual
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Central and South America
    Distribution:
    Native to Columbia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama, and Peru; Introduced: Ascension, Cameroon, and Zimbabwe
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts Hummingbirds
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Habit/Form:
    Cascading
    Dense
    Erect
    Rounded
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    High Organic Matter
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9b, 9a, 10b, 10a, 11b, 11a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Description:
    The fruit is inconspicuous.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Blue
    Purple/Lavender
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Solitary
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Star
    Tubular
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    The flowers are star-like, tubular-shaped, 5 lobed, and measure 2 inches in diameter. The bloom is purplish-blue with a white center. The flower may bloom singularly or in small clusters from late spring to fall.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    The leaves are medium green, simple, ovate in shape, and measure 2 to 4 inches long. The tips of the leaves are pointed, and the margins are entire.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    The stem is of medium thickness, green with simple hairs.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Hanging Baskets
    Houseplants
    Landscape Theme:
    Cottage Garden
    Cutting Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Attracts:
    Hummingbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Heat
    Problems:
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs