The Growing Place
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead
Chelone lyonii 'Tiny Tortuga'
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead flowers
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 15 inches
Spread: 24 inches
Hardiness Zone: 4a
Other Names: Lyon's Turtlehead, Shellflower
Lush deep-green, shiny leaves topped with dark, hot pink flowers which are shaped like little turtle heads; tolerant to moisture, this smaller cultivar is fantastic for pond edges and bog gardens
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead has masses of beautiful hot pink hooded flowers with rose overtones at the ends of the stems from mid summer to mid fall, which are most effective when planted in groupings. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its glossy pointy leaves remain dark green in color throughout the season.
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead is a dense herbaceous perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.
This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best cleaned up in early spring before it resumes active growth for the season. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
- Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens
- Bog Gardens
Planting & Growing
Tiny Tortuga Turtlehead will grow to be about 15 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. Its foliage tends to remain dense right to the ground, not requiring facer plants in front. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 12 years. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers to grow in moist to wet soil, and will even tolerate some standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selection of a native North American species. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.