Skip to Content Skip to Navigation

Machu Morado Mexican Petunia Ruellia simplex

Flower Season
  • Spring
  • Summer
Mature Size
2'8" 18"
Height: 18" - 2'8"
Spread: 10" - 18"
Award Winner
  • Details


    Don't JUST keep up with the Joneses. LEAPFROG them.

    This plant is great for hot climates and flowers prolifically when nights are warm and days are hotter. In climates where night temperatures are nice and cool, flowering will be sparse.

    Award Winner
    Continuous Bloom or Rebloomer
    Heat Tolerant
    Deadheading Not Necessary


    Plant Type: 
    Height Category: 
    Garden Height: 
    18 - 32 Inches
    10 - 18 Inches
    10 - 18 Inches
    Flower Colors: 
    Flower Shade: 
    Periwinkle Purple
    Foliage Colors: 
    Foliage Shade: 
    Deep Green
    Container Role: 

    Plant Needs

    Light Requirement: 
    Part Sun to Sun

    The optimum amount of sun or shade each plant needs to thrive: Full Sun (6+ hours), Part Sun (4-6 hours), Full Shade (up to 4 hours).

    Maintenance Category: 
    Bloom Time: 
    Planting To Frost
    Hardiness Zones: 
    9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, 11b, 12a, 12b
    Water Category: 
    Soil Fertility Requirement: 
    Average Soil
    Border Plant
    Mass Planting
    Uses Notes: 

    Good in container and landscapes. 

    Maintenance Notes: 

    This easy to care for annual loves heat and flourishes in difficult conditions. The tall plants have deep green, glossy foliage and flower most heavily when temperatures are hottest. While it will bloom in late summer in Midwestern gardens, it will bloom earlier in hotter climates and is a great plant for Southern gardens.

    It does not spread from underground rhizomes.

    Not a heavy feeder and deadheading is not necessary.

    Machu Morado Ruellia simplex 'R12-2-1' USPP 28,449
  • 12 Reviews

    Browse reviews from people who have grown this plant.
    • This was not what I expected, not a single bloom from either plant. It's tall and lush with leaves but didn't get any color for my planters. Disappointing for the price.

      Julie Burch
      , Illinois
      , United States
      , 12 weeks ago
    • I live in eastern Oregon high desert where it's hot (100+) and dry. I have mine in a container. I've read these prefer high humidity, but the plant itself is thriving, However, when the night temps were in the 60's the flowers would all fall off by morning. Now that the night temps are in the 70's the flowers aren't falling. This is a very interesting plant with thick sturdy stems and dark green leaves. As long as you're in the correct zone it should be a real performer for you.

      , Oregon
      , United States
      , 1 year ago
    • This plant was/is a total bust! I bought two and we had a fairly cool spring so I didn't expect them to grow fast. One even died. The remaining one is about 8 inches tall/wide, decent foliage but that's it. Complete waste of money. I have other mexican petunias that do very well so I'm not inexperienced with this plant.

      Leigh Mcelwee
      , Tennessee
      , United States
      , 1 year ago
    • I agree 100% with Loralei in Texas......beautiful leaves, stems, and growth habit. Very tall and sturdy plant. However, blooming has been very disappointing. I have 10 plants and get about 1 bloom a week. And the bloom last only for a day and sometimes only half a day. I live Georgia zone 8b.

      Lisa Hadden
      , Georgia
      , United States
      , 1 year ago
    • I love the Machu Morado Mexican Petunia. The colour is so true to the colour on the website. I am in Ontario, Canada, zone 6a, and for me, they almost behave like a hardy hibiscus: the blooms open up, last maybe a day, then they drop. Then in a day or two, new buds open up. As other customers said, the blooms are a bit sparse so I probably would not put them in a container and expect them to fill in. But in the landscape the colour is so pretty and so vibrant, the dark stem contrasts beautifully with the leaves... for me waiting a day for new blooms is totally worth it. They will not survive our winter, so I hope I can find them in garden centres next year. Thank you, PW.

      , Ontario
      , Canada
      , 2 years ago
    • I was a little disappointed in this plant. The foliage is great, and as healthy as can be, and growing very large, however, not one single bloom on it. I've grown a lot of Mexican Petunias over the years, and this is the first one ever, that I didn't get a single flower on the plant. I use Proven Winners soil and fertilizer, and it's a great big healthy looking shrub, but no blooms. I have it in a planter, not in the soil. It gets plenty of sun, but not too much, so the conditions are perfect. I just don't know what happened here.

      Lorelei Lisa Bobby
      , Texas
      , United States
      , 2 years ago
    • These were in my garden when I bought my house four years ago. I’m in zone 7b, but this plant was invasive, spreading several feet in all directions from a single plant. The lush, dense thicket of plants was five feet tall. A year after trying to remove it, I’m still fighting volunteers; it resprouts from the smallest node fragment. That said, pollinators love it, deer don’t bother it, and it’s beautiful. I’m allowing brave pioneers to grow in my now-diverse pollinator garden, and I will enjoy the ones braving my shade garden at woods’ edge across the yard. I first noticed this plant when I lived In Florida, where I guess it was manicured into polite behavior. Now I know it better; nice to know some living creature likes our increasingly hot climate of Piedmont NC.

      Alice Smith
      , North Carolina
      , United States
      , 2 years ago
    • I bought these at my local garden center, on the container it says it’s a perrineal, I sure hope that’s right. Anyways I love the purple blooms, very plentiful. Will definitely buy more!

      Jo Copeland
      , Texas
      , United States
      , 2 years ago
    • They have a lovely structure and great leaf color... BUT barely any blooms. Out of the 5 plants we have planted they probably average a few blooms total per week by late August in zone 5b. Nice looking plant, but would only plant again for leaves and structure, not blooms.

      , New York
      , United States
      , 3 years ago
    • Gives amazing blooms everyday with a rich vibrant Purple!

      Roberto Gelacio
      , Texas
      , United States
      , 3 years ago
  • 11 Awards

    Award Year Award Plant Trial
    2020 Top Performer North Carolina State, JC Raulston Arboretum
    2020 Leaders of the Pack North Carolina State, JC Raulston Arboretum
    2020 Top Performer Mississippi State University - Poplarville
    2018 Top Performer University of Florida - Fort Lauderdale
    2018 Leader of the Pack - Early Season in Containers North Carolina State, JC Raulston Arboretum
    2018 Top Performer University of Georgia
    2018 Top Flowering Annuals for Warm Weather Mississippi State University - Poplarville
    2018 Plant of Distinction University of Georgia
    2018 Leader of the Pack - All Season in Containers North Carolina State, JC Raulston Arboretum
    2018 Leader of the Pack - Late Season in Containers North Carolina State, JC Raulston Arboretum
Back to Top

Find plants you love and create idea boards for all your projects.

To create an idea board, sign in or create an account.