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Echium wildpretii

Phonetic Spelling
ek-EE-um wild-PRET-ee-eye
Description

Tower of Jewels is an unusual biennial plant native to the Canary Islands where it grows on rocky, volcanic hillsides in cool dry summers. It will tolerate temperatures down to 25 F. The first year it produces a 2-3 foot wide basal rosette of silvery green long thin leaves. The second or possibly the third year a 5-7 foot tall flower stem emerges with the same narrow silvery leaves as the rosette. In spring this is topped by hundreds of dark rose-pink flowers with protruding stamens in a dense terminal spike.  Flowers bloom in late spring to early summer in their native habitat. They then set seed and the plant dies. Even in death, it is attractive.

This is a plant for tropical gardens in zones 9-10. However, with a greenhouse and a very large pot, it could be grown further north.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#showy flowers#biennial#pink flowers#showstopper#unusual#large containers#large plant#tropical feel
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#showy flowers#biennial#pink flowers#showstopper#unusual#large containers#large plant#tropical feel
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Echium
    Species:
    wildpretii
    Family:
    Boraginaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Biennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Canary Islands
    Dimensions:
    Height: 5 ft. 0 in. - 8 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Perennial
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9b, 9a, 10b, 10a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Pink
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spike
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Funnel
    Flower Description:
    100s of rose-pink to nearly red funnel-shaped flowers with protruding stamens are produced on a dense terminal spike in spring
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Broadleaf Evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Up to 8 inch long linear-lanceolate silver-green leaves in a basal rosette.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Landscape Theme:
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Attracts:
    Pollinators