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Herbaceous Perennial

Linaria purpurea
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

purple toadflax

L. purpurea is a vigorous perennial with erect stems clad in narrow, grey-green leaves, with purple flowers 1.5cm long in slender terminal racemes in summer and early autumn; often seeds freely

Synonyms
Antirrhinum purpureum

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Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green Grey Silver
Summer Purple Green Grey Silver
Autumn Purple Green Grey Silver
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H6
Botanical details
Family
Plantaginaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Linaria can be annuals, biennials or herbaceous perennials, with simple leaves and terminal racemes of 2-lipped flowers with conspicuous spurs

Name status

Correct

Plant range
C. Italy to Sicily

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, light, well-drained soil; sandy soil is ideal. Full sun essential

Propagation

Propagate by seed in pots in a cold frame in early spring. Propagate by division or softwood cuttings in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Coastal
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Underplanting of roses and shrubs
Pruning

After flowering, plants can be cut back to prevent self-seeding

Pests

May be attacked by aphids

Diseases

May be affected by powdery mildews

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