Obedient Plant, False Dragonhead
Physostegia virginiana (L.) Benth. is the correct and accepted scientific name for this species of Physostegia. It was named and described as such by George Bentham in Labiatarum Genera et Species in 1834, It was first described as Dracocephalum virginianum by Carl Linnaeus in Species Plantarum in 1753.
The genus, Physostegia Benth., was named and described by George Bentham in Edward’s Botanical Register in 1829. Plants of the World Online list 12 accepted species in the genus.
I bought my Physostegia virginiana (Obedient Plant) from one of the local garden clubs plant sale in the spring of 2016. This plant has been on my wishlist for many years so I was glad I found one at the plant sale. A lot of information online say this species can be somewhat invasive, but so far I haven’t had any problems with that. I put it where an invasion would be a good thing in a corner along the foundation of my grandparent’s old house.
Origin: North America
Zones: USDA Zones 3a-10b (-40 to 35° F)
Size: 24-36” tall
Light: Sun to part shade
Soil: Well-drained soil
Notes: Plants can flop in rich soil, to much shade and hot temps.
On February 18, I pushed back the leaves in the corner of the foundation and this plant was still green.
This square stemmed perennial gets the name Obedient Plant by the way the individual flowers will temporarily stay where you put them. Flower spikes (inflorescences) can be around 10” long are arranged in four rows. Flowers can be white, pink and lavender shades and can have stripes or dots.
Some information says the plants can flop in rich soil, to much shade and hot temps. Other sites say they need rich, moist soil.
As I mentioned earlier, this plant can supposedly become invasive if it is growing where in favorable conditions. There are several cultivars, including one called ‘Miss Manners’ which behaves itself and doesn’t wander.
I hope you enjoyed this page and maybe found it useful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, I would like to hear from you. Please click on “like” if you visited this page. It helps us bloggers stay motivated. 🙂 You can check out the links below for further reading. The links take you directly to the genus and species of this plant.