Hemigraphis 'Exotica'
Common Name: hemigraphis 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Acanthaceae
Zone: 10 to 11
Height: 0.50 to 0.75 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: June to July
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Annual, Ground Cover
Flower: Showy
Leaf: Colorful
Tolerate: Drought, Dry Soil


Winter hardy to USDA Zones 10-11 where it is best grown in rich, moist, humusy, well-drained soils in part shade. Metallic foliage sheen may not develop well in full sun. In St. Louis, grow in containers, hanging baskets or as an annual ground cover. Propagate vegetatively by cuttings.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Hemgraphis is a genus of about 90 species of low-growing annuals, perennials and subshrubs from Tropical Asia.

Genus name comes from the Greek words hemi meaning half and graphis meaning brush (for one half of a brush) referring to the dense hair-covering on the filaments of the outer stamens.

‘Exotica’ is commonly called waffle plant or purple waffle plant in recognition of its waffled, glossy maroon-purple leaves. It is primarily valued as a ground cover or container plant for its puckered and colorful foliage. ‘Exotica’ is a prostrate tropical perennial that typically grows to 6-9” tall and spreads indefinitely along the ground rooting at the stem nodes as it goes. Puckered, ovate leaves (to 3.5” long) are glossy maroon to purplish-green above and wine red beneath. Small white flowers in terminal spikes bloom in late spring to early summer.


Watch for scale and whiteflies.


Hanging baskets, containers or ground cover. Water gardens.