Persian Shield foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 3 feet
Spread: 3 feet
Hardiness Zone: 9b
This shrub or subshrub is primarily grown for its stunning iridescent purple foliage; leaves have contrasting black veins and a silver cast when mature; pinch stems to promote bushiness; best foliage color in part shade; can be overwintered indoors
Persian Shield has attractive purple foliage with black veins and tinges of silver which emerges deep purple in spring. The large glossy pointy leaves are highly ornamental and remain purple throughout the winter. It features dainty spikes of violet trumpet-shaped flowers rising above the foliage from late fall to late winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Persian Shield is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.
This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best cleaned up in early spring before it resumes active growth for the season. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Persian Shield is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Persian Shield will grow to be about 3 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 3 feet. It has a low canopy. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.
This shrub does best in full sun to partial shade. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This species is not originally from North America. It can be propagated by cuttings.
Persian Shield makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.