Tuesday, August 30, 2016


Several years ago, in the spring, a friend gave me a cutting of the plant Orthosiphon aristatus, more commonly called Cat's Whiskers or Java tea. I planted it in the garden and forgot about it until one late summer day I saw this beautiful white bloom. It was an easy id because the flowers are very much a reminder of cat's whiskers.

Every year I have asked our local nurseries if they had the plant. Every year the answer was no-until this year. We had gone to visit a friend's garden in Georgetown and learned of a nursery nearby where they had the plant. It was the end of May and a little late for planting, especially as I was going to be gone for 5 weeks in June. Still, worth a try. How glad I am that I did and how happy was the hummingbird who visited this morning.
I'm going to try to take cuttings in the fall because unless I mulch really well the plant is not likely to survive a central Texas winter. I also will ask my local nursery to locate some of this plant next year.


  1. They are a favorite, for sure! Mine, also from the Georgetown nursery, is going crazy after all the rain. Glad you got one too!

  2. It's such an interesting plant. I've seen posts on the plant out of the southeast too but, although ostensibly suited to my zone 10 as well, I've never seen it in a nursery or garden center here either.

  3. I planted some in my in-laws garden in Malaysia - where it is relatively commonly sold in nurseries - last summer but it does not appear to have much staying power, since three months later they had all disappeared, despite tropical temperatures and very regular rain, while everything else I had planted was doing well.