In The Garden Now…..Mouse Plant

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Mouse Tail Plant

Text and Photos by Victoria Gilleland

The lowly mouse has a pretty unsavory reputation. But most people would admit that the little critters themselves are kind of cute.

Well here’s a chance to add a whole colony of mice to your garden that will never be pests! 

The flowers of the well behaved Mouse Plant look a lot like small mice…. long bare tail and all. 

They come up in early spring and fade away into dormancy by the end of August. 

This growth cycle makes them a good candidate for planting near Hardy Cyclamen which come up in late summer or early fall and go dormant in spring. 

Leaves of the Mouse Tail plant

Handsome, shiny, arrow shaped leaves emerge in late winter and are followed by maroon and white mouse-like flowers. You may actually have to get down on your knees to see the ‘mice’ that are tucked under the low growing leaves. It’s worth the effort to see these garden cuties!

Native to southern Europe, including Italy and Spain, this is a truly unique little plant that is part of the Arisarum family. Jack in the Pulpit is a larger cousin to this plant and one of the better known family members.

Mouse Plant flourishes in part sun to shade, is drought tolerant and easy to grow. How about adding a clump of these well behaved, easy care ‘pets’ to your gardening world?

(Botanical Name: Arisarum proboscideum)

Victoria Gilleland is the owner of Cottage Garden Designs, a Garden Design company specializing in Redesign of Residential Gardens, Garden Consultation and Coaching. She has been designing gardens in the Northwest for over 25 years. ( vjgilleland@yahoo.com )



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