Plant FinderPlant Finder Graphic
Perilla frutescens
Perilla frutescens

Click to Enlarge

Zone
Zones A1-A3, 1-45, H1, H2
Full SunPartial Sun
Full, Partial
Regular Water
Moderate

Perilla frutescens

Shiso
Lamiaceae (Labiatae)
Annuals, Herbs

Native from the Himalayas to eastern Asia. Sturdy, leafy warm-weather plant grows very quickly to 2–3 ft. tall and 1 ft. wide. Broadly ovate, deeply toothed leaves reach 5 in. long. The kind most commonly seen has bronzy or purple leaves that look much like those of coleus. Fancy Fringe strain has deeply cut and fringed leaves in dark bronzy purple. Shiso makes an attractive addition to summer borders, but various parts of the plant are also edible. Use leaves as a vegetable or flavoring (they taste something like mint, something like cinnamon); fry the long, thin clusters of flower buds in tempura batter and serve as a vegetable. In Asia, the seeds are pressed for edible oil. Extremely easy to grow; self-sows freely.

You Might Also Like...

Cucumber

Native to south Asia. Each vine needs at least 25 sq. ft., but you can run vines up a fence or trellis...

Gaillardia x grandiflora ‘Arizona Sun’

Compact, uniform plant grows to about 10 in. tall and 12 in. wide and is loaded with large flowers. Ea...

Primula malacoides

Grows to 8–15 in. high and 1 ft. wide. Evergreen. Soft, pale green, oval, 1 1/2–3-in.-long...

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

Find Your Sunset Climate Zone

View Maps Learn More

Advertisement