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Growing Lion’s Tail (Leonotis leonurus)

Create a focal point in the fall garden with the stately lion’s tail.

 This South African native plant, also known as lion’s ear, grows 3 to 6’ tall in a single season. Start seeds indoors in early spring. Or plant seeds directly in the garden shortly before the average date of the last spring frost.

Grow it in a sunny location with well-drained soil. Once established, lion’s tail is drought tolerant. The clusters of fuzzy reddish-orange tubular flowers attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

Lion’s tail is hardy in zones 9 to 11, flowers spring through late fall and may remain green in frost-free areas.  They can be overwintered indoors in areas where they are not hardy.

The plants reseed although this species of Leonotis has not been found invasive in North America. Always check for invasive issues before adding any plants to your garden.

A bit more information: Grow lion’s tail in a sunny window indoors for winter. Water thoroughly when the top few inches of soil begin to dry. Prune as needed and move outdoors after the danger of frost has passed.

Upcoming Appearances


Jan. 26, 2022
Gardening for Wildlife
(webinar)

Jan. 29, 2022
WCBA's Home Building &
Remodeling Expo

West Bend, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 2, 2022
Small Space Gardening
(webinar)

Feb. 11-13, 2022
PBS Wisconsin
Garden & Landscape EXPO

Madison, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 18-20, 2022
NARI Milwaukee
Spring Home Improvement Show

Milwaukee, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 23, 2022
Dahlias - Proven Performers!
(webinar)

March 1, 2022
Michigan Green Industry Assn.
Annual Tradeshow & Convention

Novi, MI
(in-person event)

March 5-6, 2022
​​​​​​​Maryland Home & Garden Show
Lutherville-Timonium, MD
(in-person event)

​​​​​​​March 26-27, 2022
​​​​​​​REALTORS Home & Garden Show
West Allis, WI
(in-person event)

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