Red dead-nettle – Lamium purpureum

Mint Family – Lamiaceae

Actual flower size: ½ inch long

Actual flower size: ½ inch long

Red Dead-nettle is also called Purple Dead-nettle or Red Henbit.

Plant Description: Red Dead-nettle is a 4 to 12 inch tall annual herb with hollow, square, branched stems. The upper portion of the plant is very leafy, almost hiding the pink flowers. The leaves are opposite, toothed, softly hairy, round to egg-shaped with a heart-shaped base. The lower leaves are dark green; the upper ones are usually purple-tinged.

Flower Description: The flower is about 1/2 inch long and 2-lipped. The upper lip is hooded.  The lower lip has 3 small, irregular lobes, blotched with purple.

Ecology: Red Dead-nettle grows in coastal, disturbed sites, meadow and gardens.


  • Red Dead-nettle is non-native.
  • It is called “Dead-nettle”  because it does not sting like Stinging Nettle to which it is not related.
  • Red Dead-nettle can be found in bloom any month of the year, but mainly in the spring when it sometimes creates a pretty, reddish carpet.

 Red Dead-nettle Photo Gallery

Photo Information: #1687 was taken on March 7, 2002 and #1799 and #1802 were taken on April 7, 2002. All these photos were taken on a roadside in Shoreline WA.

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