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Herbaceous Perennial

Chelone obliqua

twisted shell flower

C. obliqua is an erect perennial to 60cm tall, with prominently veined and toothed leaves, and compact spikes of dusky deep pink or purple flowers 2cm long

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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
Clay
Loam
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Poorly–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring
Summer Pink Purple Green
Autumn Pink Purple Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing or North–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Plantaginaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Chelone are herbaceous perennials with undivided, paired leaves and short terminal spikes of showy, 2-lipped, tubular flowers opening from late summer to early autumn

Name status

Correct

Plant range
USA

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How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in deep fertile, moist soil in partial shade or sun. Tolerant of heavy clay soil, may also be grown in a bog garden; apply a deep mulch of organic matter in mid-spring

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in containers in a cold frame in early spring; by division in spring; root soft tip cuttings in late spring or early summer

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Flower borders and beds
Pruning

Deadhead flower spikes as they fade

Pests

Susceptible to damage from slugs and snails

Diseases

Generally disease free

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