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Lamium
Lamium

Dead Nettle sounds like it should be the name of a rock band, and actually it is. But what we’re talking about here is an adaptable group of shade plants known botanically as the genus Lamium and commonly as Dead Nettle. In this case, “dead” means no prickly hairs and no owies like you would experience touching the similar looking Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica). Tolerating heat, cold and variations in soil moisture are other benefits of Lamiums. They are also well-known for thriving on the edge of shade gardens where sun exposure shifts at different times of day and season. However, these are plants that love full shade and the dappled sunlight of partial shade.

The genus is part of the mint family (Lamiaceae), so its species are fine companion plants for shade Salvias. Lamiums are native to parts of Asia, Europe and North Africa. Most kinds grown commercially are varieties of Lamium maculatum, which spreads easily by stolons (runners) to form dense, short groundcover. It is sometimes referred to as Spotted Dead Nettle due to its attractively variegated foliage – ranging from lacy looks to silvery stripes and splashes of glowing color. These long blooming perennials generally attract bees but not deer.

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(Anne Greenaway Dead Nettle) The glowing tri-color foliage of this Lamium features splashes of cheerful chartreuse that light up full shade. Similar to other Dead Nettles, it has heart-shaped leaves with dentate margins that look like they were trimmed with pinking shears.
$7.50

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(Chequers Dead Nettle) This is one of the most long blooming plants in our new collection of Dead Nettles. At our Mendocino Coast farm in California, we enjoy the bright magenta blossoms beginning in spring and sometimes lasting into fall.
$7.50

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(Ghost Dead Nettle) Like tiny bouquets, clusters of magenta flowers pop up out of the silvery green foliage of this Lamium. Its heart-shaped leaves are larger than those of other Dead Nettles and have dentate margins looking as if trimmed with pinking shears.
$7.50

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(Shell Pink Dead Nettle) Soft pink like the inside of a conch shell, the flowers of this Lamium bloom off and on from spring into fall. They’re surrounded by tiny, mid-green, heart-shaped leaves variegated with silvery center stripes.
$7.50

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