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Red Turtlehead Chelone obliqua var. obliqua

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
kay-LOH-nee oh-BLEEK-wuh oh-BLEEK-wuh
Description

Turtlehead is a clumping native perennial in the plantain family found in moist forested areas in the southeastern U.S.A and is considered rare in NC but can be found in the coastal and mountain areas. The pinkish-purple flowers occur on terminal spikes, are snapdragon-like in appearance and are said to resemble the head of a turtle. They bloom from July to Oct.

Use this plant in a consistently moist woodland site, along streams, ponds or bogs in full sun to dappled sun. It prefers rich humusy soils with composted leaf mulch in dappled sun. Turtlehead attracts bees and hummingbirds. It is available commercially but be sure you are getting the species as it is often sold as a hybrid.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#hummingbirds#showy flowers#purple flowers#native perennial#NC native#food source fall#pond edge#Coastal OBL#food source herbage#food source nectar#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#butterflies#pollinators#streams#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#hummingbirds#showy flowers#purple flowers#native perennial#NC native#food source fall#pond edge#Coastal OBL#food source herbage#food source nectar#Piedmont Mountains OBL#wet soils tolerant#butterflies#pollinators#streams#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Chelone
    Species:
    obliqua
    Family:
    Plantaginaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southeastern U.S.A.
    Wildlife Value:
    This plant attracts hummingbirds and pollinators.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Erect
    Maintenance:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Dappled Sunlight (Shade through upper canopy all day)
    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)
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Occasionally Wet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    The fruit is dry and splits open when ripe. Matures from September to November.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spike
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Tubular
    Flower Petals:
    fused petals
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    1-1.5 inch pinkish-purple flowers are tubular, arching, and produced in dense terminal spikes. The most distinctive feature of this species is the flower, which has finely hairy sepals, a two-lipped pinkish-purple corolla, and contains a white staminodium (a sterile stamen). Blooms July to Oct.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Opposite
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Leaves are opposite, short-stalked, narrowly lance-shaped that are 7-9 inches long and sharply saw-toothed.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Pond
    Riparian
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rain Garden
    Water Garden
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Pollinators