My ‘Wasabi’ coleus did a little too well

Take a look at that bright green or chartreuse shrub in my front garden above. It isn’t a shrub. It was (once) a single pot of ‘Wasabi’ coleus that I bought from Plant World this spring for my large container.

A ‘Wasabi’ intent on taking over the world.

Here it is in October. The spread to the right and below comes from two cuttings, roughly shoved into the potting mix back in late June. They took. Then they took over, too.

Now, ‘Wasabi’ is an amazingly tough and beautiful coleus. I’ve used it in containers numerous times, but it has never been so vigorous – never this vigorous – before. And I didn’t do anything differently, except to purchase a larger specimen in, I think, a one-gallon pot to get the jump on spring.

The equally beautiful 'Campfire' coleus, bought in a smaller pot in the same place at the same time, is definitely getting its ass kicked.
‘Wasabi’ “put out” the equally beautiful ‘Campfire’ coleus, bought in a smaller pot at the same time.

‘Wasabi’ this year is more than living up to its promise of that 36″ height, and sneering at predictions of a 28″ width. Ha! It showed me. As a result, the other plants in my design were completely overshadowed (literally and figuratively).

I did pinch it back to try to keep it compact, and inserted a couple of cuttings into the two smaller pots in this grouping. Each cutting developed its own monster. A beautiful monster, but a big one, nonetheless. And, in fact, in August, I harvested a huge bunch to use in a floral design presentation. Still, ‘Wasabi’ grew ever onward, upward and outward!

If you peer closely, you might just make out that ‘Gryphon’ begonia I wrote about last year. The ‘Bonfire’ Begonia boliviensis did its best, but got nudged to the side.

It just goes to show, be careful what you wish for. Every time I walk past this display, it gives me a chuckle.

1 comment

  1. Wow – that’s crazy! I never new that coleus could grow any taller than 12″ or 15″. I’ve made a note of those varieties…coleus is at the top of my “to try” list of seed purchases for next spring & I’m so looking forward to cruising the seed catalogues for different varieties.

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