Strobilanthes dyeriana the ‘Persian Shield’ is one of those plants that lets you know nature was having a good day when it first appeared with shocking metallic purple centres to the leaves a mature plant is quite a sight. Originating from the warm tropical forests of Myanmar in Southeast Asia Strobilanthes dyeriana requires warm conditions enjoying rich fertile composts. For us lovers of all things tropical most grow it as an exotic bedding plant, planted outside in dappled sunlight once all possibility of frost has passed where it will happily grow into a small bushy plant up to 60cm high right up until the first chill of autumn. It can easily be overwintered or indeed grown year round as a house or conservatory plant given lots of light in fact if you do grow it through the winter you will get to see the tiny but very dainty blue flowers too. If you have only slightly green fingers cuttings taken in early autumn can easily be rooted and a plant or two overwintered on a bright windowsill.
A spectacular plant which despite not being hardy is well worth a bit of effort and looks amazing planted amongst Colocasia, Musa, Canna and farfugiums in a jungle bed.