Catch Coleus Fever

English gardeners went crazy for coleus in the mid-19th century. Now we're falling for them all over again, as the National Garden Bureau declares 2015 "The Year of the Coleus."
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Photo By: Courtesy of National Garden Bureau

Photo By: Image courtesy National Garden Bureau

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of National Garden Bureau

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of Proven Winners

Photo By: Courtesy of National Garden Bureau

Photo By: Courtesy of National Garden Bureau

'Marquee Blonde Bombshell' Coleus

A star in sun or shade, 'Marquee Blonde Bombshell' is a coleus with unusual, elongated leaves. The gold and yellow foliage has streaks of lime green and purple; the stems are purple, too.

Scarlet Coleus 'Kong Jr.'

'Kong Jr.’ doesn't monkey around. While this coleus didn't make it to the top of the Empire State Building when it debuted in 2013, it's climbed onto many gotta-have plant lists since then. Also available in ‘Rose’,  ‘Lime Vein’, and ‘Green Halo'. it brightens the shade all summer.

ColorBlaze 'Kingswood Torch' Coleus

'Kingswood Torch' sparkles in shades of burgundy and magenta. This coleus shows good heat tolerance and resists deer.

Fuseables 'Under the Sun' Coleus

A combination of 'Lime Delight' and 'Crimson Gold' seeds, this coleus mix tolerates partial sun to shade. The plants grow 20 to 32 inches tall and look especially striking when grown in color bowls.

Colorblaze 'Alligator Tears' Coleus

With its alligator-green leaves and cream-and-yellow markings, 'Alligator Tears' thrives in the garden or adapts as a houseplant. Give this coleus sun or shade; it grows 20 to 30 inches tall, so it makes a great "thriller," or centerpiece plant, in mixed containers.

'Lime Sprite' Coleus

Shade-loving 'Lime Sprite', with its big, lime-and-mahogany leaves, is beautiful in mixed containers. If you prefer, grow this mounding coleus in the garden or landscape instead.

ColorBlaze 'Marooned' Coleus

Burgundy 'Marooned' has won dozens of awards in plant trials at state universities and in master gardens. Hardy in zones 10a to 11b, this coleus grows in sun or shade and attracts hummingbirds.

'Pineapple' Coleus

Great for the garden or as a houseplant, 'Pineapple' packs a punch with its yellow, red, and lime-green foliage. Grow this heat-tolerant coleus in sun or shade.

ColorBlaze 'Royal Glissade' Coleus

Award-winning 'Royal Glissade' has toothy, raspberry and moss-green leaves that stand up to the heat. This coleus grows in sun or shade and resists deer while attracting hummingbirds and other birds.

'Painted Desert' Coleus Combination

This stunning combination, 'Painted Desert', uses 'Marooned', 'Alligator Tears', 'Lime Time', 'Sedona' and 'Royal Glissade' coleus. All these plants thrive in sun to shade.

ColorBlaze 'Sedona' Coleus

Named for the Sedona Mountains, this coleus has rusty orange to bronze-brown lobed leaves. 'Sedona' grows 24 to 30 inches tall in sun or shade.

'Wizard Velvet Red' Coleus

'Wizard Velvet Red' may remind you of a wizard's rich red, velvety robe. The leaves have serrated edges outlined with a touch of ivory-white. The compact plants grow just 10 to 12 inches high in partial shade or sun.

ColorBlaze 'Dark Star'

Inky-purple 'Dark Star' can look nearly black in shady spots, but it also thrives in sun. The plants grow 12 to 16 inches tall and are eye-catching in beds of white or silver flowers and foliage.