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Chelone glabra

white turtlehead add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun, part-shade

Water Use: medium, high

Soil Moisture: moist, wet

Soil Description: acid, rich, loam, clay, sand

Height: 2'-3'

Bloom Time: August, September, October

Bloom Color: white

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: attracts butterflies, attracts hummingbirds, clumping, colonizing, naturalizing, pond margin plant, stream margin plant

Flower of Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)
  • Flower of Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)
  • Flower of Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)
  • Flower of Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)
  • Flower of Chelone glabra (white turtlehead)

Pricing & Availability

Description

Chelone glabra

Also known as:

white turtlehead

,

turtle heads

Scientific Synonyms:

Chelone chlorantha, Chelone montana

Description

Chelone glabra is a clump forming plant with stiff, 3' tall flowering stems and long, narrow, lance-shaped, dark green leaves. In late summer it is topped with a dense spike of 1 1/4" long, white hooded flowers, with a pink tint, resembling turtle heads.

Cultivation

Native to stream edges and swampy areas, white turtlehead is easy to grow under typical garden conditions, so long as the plants are well watered during dry spells. It will tolerate some shade, however this might lead to weak stems that will require staking. Tips can be pinched back earlier in the growing season to encourage a more compact form. The root system consists of taproots and rhizomes. It can spread vegetatively, but does not do so aggressively. This is an excellent choice for rain gardens. The blooming period occurs from August to October and lasts about a month. Zones 3-8

Propagation

Easiest to propagate by root division when the plant is dormant in early spring or late fall. Plants propagated from seed will take a couple of years to flower.

Additional Notes

Great around ponds, streams, and bogs, or to naturalize in wet meadows

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Exploitably Vulnerable: NY

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Scrophulariales
Family Scrophulariaceae Figwort family
Genus Chelone turtlehead
Species Chelone glabra white turtlehead