Plant Type
Sunlight Amount
Credit: Dean Schoeppner

Browallia earns its nicknames of amethyst flower and sapphire flower because of its vibrant blue star-shaped blooms, which pop out like jewels against the plant’s bright green foliage. A tidy mounding plant, it works well in containers or for edging the front of a border. Browallia tolerates heat well and will bloom continuously throughout the growing season without deadheading. Plus, the flowers attract hummingbirds and other pollinators. Usually grown as an annual, browallia is actually a tropical perennial so you can bring it inside for the winter and grow it like a houseplant until the next spring.

genus name
  • Browallia
  • Part Sun
  • Shade
plant type
  • 1 to 3 feet
  • 6 to 12 inches
flower color
foliage color
season features
special features
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11

Colorful Combinations

Browallia is one of the few annuals that thrives in part shade to full shade, and it makes an eye-catching option to use in place of impatiens. Most commonly found with sapphire blue flowers, browallia also comes with bright purple or pristine white blossoms. As a backdrop to these vibrant petals, the emerald green foliage forms a dense mat that lasts throughout the growing season.

Browallia Care Must-Knows

Keep browallia thriving all season long by growing it in organically rich, moist soil and part shade to full shade conditions. (The leaves are likely to burn in direct sunlight.) Water regularly and fertilize occasionally throughout the growing season to support a continuous display of flowers.

Growing this shade-lover from seed is a simple alternative to hunting for it at local garden centers. Start them indoors 8 to 10 weeks prior to the frost-free date in your area by sowing seeds directly on top of the soil; they need sunlight to germinate. Keep the soil lightly moist. Seedlings will emerge in 2 to 3 weeks. Divide and plant them in individual pots once their true sets of leaves have emerged over the next few weeks. As soon as the threat of frost has passed, begin to harden off plants. Plant them outside once the seedlings have developed two sets of leaves and a robust root system. Water regularly as browallia doesn't tolerate drought. Pinch back plants to keep them bushy.

More Varieties of Browallia

Credit: Dean Schoeppner

Endless Illumination browallia

Vibrant violet-blue star-shape blossoms cover this plant from spring until frost. Zones 9- 11

Endless Flirtation browallia
Credit: Justin Hancock

Endless Flirtation browallia

Crisp white flowers contrast beautifully with emerald green foliage for the entire growing season. It grows 14 inches tall and has a trailing habit to 8 inches. Zones 9-10

Browallia Companion Plants

Coral Swirl Impatiens
Credit: Peter Krumhardt


What would we do without impatiens? It's the old reliable for shade gardens when you want eye-popping color all season long. The plants bloom in just about every color except true blue and are well suited to growing in containers or in the ground. If you have a bright spot indoors, you may be able to grow impatiens all year as an indoor plant.

sweet potato vines
Credit: Peter Krumhardt

Sweet Potato Vine

Among the most popular container-garden plants, sweet potato vine is a vigorous grower that you can count on to make a big impact. Its colorful foliage, in shades of chartreuse or purple, accents just about any other plant. Grow a few together in a large pot, and they make a big impact all on their own. Sweet potato vines do best during the warm days of summer and prefer moist, well-drained soil. They thrive in sun or shade.

begonia big rose with bronze leaf
Credit: Justin Hancock


Talk about foolproof: Annual begonia is about as easy as it gets. It does well in a variety of conditions, but to keep it its most luxuriant best, give it light shade; rich, well-drained soil; and ample water. It also loves plenty of fertilizer, so be generous. Plant annual begonias in spring after all danger of frost has passed. No need to deadhead this flower unless you want to, it's "self-cleaning!"


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