Plant of the Week: Lamb's Ear (Stachys Byzantina)

It might surprise you to know that Lamb’s Ear is a member of the mint family, which in some cases can be invasive in warmer climates if not taken care of properly.

The beauty of its silver, soft and fuzzy leaves showcases a velvety low-spreading groundcover. When the flowers bloom in the summer, it displays purple-pink flowers - but you’ll want to remove those buds to further enhance its foliage and prevent it from spreading too much. 

Native to Turkey, Armenia and Iran, the perennial gets its name from Stachys - meaning “ear of corn.” 

How to grow Lamb’s Ear

  • Space 18 inches apart
  • Plant in dry-to-medium soil in full sun
  • Don’t overwater  - it only requires about an inch of moisture a week
  • Best for zones 4a-9a
  • While not prone to pests, fungal leaf diseases may occur if over-watered
  • It’s prolific growing ability makes it easy to re-grow if you experience rot

Companion plants and pollinators

Moon garden plants such as Nicotiana Sylvestris, Rose Campion and Datura, Alyssum and Verbena Bonariensis.

Fun facts

  • Lamb’s Ear is attractive in rock gardens or as a border plant
  • Its medicinal history includes treatment of wounds, stings, colds, sore throats and mouth sores
  • Easy to grow but difficult to contain if not properly taken care of or contained
  • It gets its name from the silky hairs that cover the foliage, making it feel soft - and the leaves curve into the shape of a lamb’s ear

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