Blue Spur Flower

Also known as:
Large Spur-Flower Bush, Mauve Plectranthus
East & South Africa

General description

Strong-smelling, erect shrubs <3 tall. Large, downy, soft, broad, oval leaves with coarsely toothed edges; pointed tips on P. ecklonii & rounded tips on P. grandis; Leaves of P. grandis are much larger than P. ecklonii. Erect flower spikes (loose on P ecklonii & dense on P grandis) covered with blue-purple flowers Dec-May). Tiny brown ‘nutlets’ (autumn).

Very shade tolerant, grows in native forest margins or in disturbed forest. Frost- tender.

Limited local spread by seeds. Mostly spread from stem fragments due to dumping.

Shades out lower native vegetation & scrambles over other plants. Prevents establishment of many native species. Dense growth restricts access to bush areas.

Site management

Easy to control. Follow up within 3-6 months to kill resprouted stems. Replant bare sites.

Recommended approaches

1. Grub out small plants removing all stem fragments.
2. Cut & stump paint larger infestations (200ml glyphosate/1L or 1g metsulfuron/1L or 100ml triclopyr/1L).
3. Spray all year round (100ml glyphosate + 20ml penetrant/10L or 2g metsulfuron + 10ml penetrant/10L).

Caution: when using any herbicide or pesticide PLEASE READ THE LABEL THOROUGHLY to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Similar species

Bartlettina sordida

Bartlettina leaves have red veins. The plant has bunches of fluffy pink flowers as opposed to erect flower spikes.

velvet groundsel
Roldana petasitis

Velvet groundsel leaves and stems have a reddish tinge. The plant has bunches of yellow daisy like flowers as opposed to erect flower spikes

RPMS status

Surveillance - Whole Region
blue spur flower - Main species image