Information About Under The Sea Coleus Collection


By: Nikki Tilley, Author of The Bulb-o-licious Garden

Well, if you’ve read many of my articles or books, then you know I am someone with a curious interest in unusual things – especially in the garden. That being said, when I came across Under the Sea coleus plants, I was quite taken aback. This was indeed something I wanted not only to grow but to share its unusual beauty with others.

Growing Coleus Under the Sea Plants

Coleus is just one of a number of plants in the garden I love to grow. Not only are they easy to care for, but they are simply breathtaking foliage plants with so many color variations and forms that you just can’t go wrong in whichever you choose. And then there’s the Under the Sea™ coleus plants.

Under the Sea coleus plants (Solestomeon scutellarioides) hail from Canada, where they were bred by students at Saskatchewan University. So what sets this collection apart from all other coleus varieties? It’s the “wild shapes and colors” found in the various cultivars that make them so alluring. Well, that and the fact that they are not your typical shade lover as most coleus are – these can actually tolerate sun too!

Typically growing similar to other types of coleus, you can plant Under the Sea coleus seeds in containers and other areas of the garden, shade or sun. Keep the soil somewhat moist and ensure that it’s well draining. You can also pinch the tips to create a bushy look, though most of the Under the Sea types are more compact naturally anyway (topping out at around 15 to 18 inches (38 to 46 cm.) high and a foot or so wide (30+ cm.), so this may not even be an issue.

Under the Sea Coleus Collection

Here are some of the most popular plants in this series (I am sure there are lots more):

  • Lime Shrimp – this one is noted for its deeply lobed lime-green leaves, which are also edged in dark purple.
  • Gold Anemone – the leaves of this one have numerous golden to chartreuse leaflets with streaks of yellow to gold and brown edges.
  • Bone Fish – slightly narrower than others in the series, its pink to light red leaflets are long and slender with finely-cut lobes edged in bright gold to pale green.
  • Hermit Crab – this type is edged in lime green and its leaves are bright pink, and shaped like a crustacean or possible crab.
  • Langostino – this is considered the largest in the collection with orange-red leaves and secondary leaflets which are edged in bright gold.
  • Red Coral – probably the smallest, or most compact, of the series, this plant has red leaves that are edged in green and black.
  • Molten Coral – another compact variety, this one has foliage of reddish-orange with bright green tips.
  • Sea Scallop – this type has attractive chartreuse leaves that are more rounded in nature with purple edging and overtones.

So if you’re anything like me with a love for all things outside the norm, consider growing one (if not all) of the coleus Under the Sea plants in your garden. They are readily available through many nurseries, garden centers or mail-order seed suppliers.

This article was last updated on


Under The Sea Coleus Plants - Tips For Growing Coleus Under The Sea - garden

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus

Solenostemon scutellarioides 'Bone Fish'

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus foliage

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus foliage

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus foliage

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus foliage

Group/Class: Under the Sea Series

Extraordinary foliage is finely incised, fuchsia to deep rose, and edged in chartreuse has a nice, compact mounded habit great for container planting, or the front of beds

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus' attractive deeply cut pointy leaves remain fuchsia in color with distinctive chartreuse edges throughout the year. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus is an herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant. The flowers of this plant may actually detract from its ornamental features, so they can be removed as they appear. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus is recommended for the following landscape applications

  • Mass Planting
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting
  • Hanging Baskets

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus will grow to be about 18 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 10 inches apart. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.

This plant does best in partial shade to shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by cuttings however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Under The Sea™ Bone Fish Coleus is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor containers and hanging baskets. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a canvas of foliage against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.


Plant Finder

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus

Solenostemon scutellarioides 'Copper Coral'

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus foliage

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus foliage

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus

Other Names: Flame Nettle, Painted Nettle

Group/Class: Under The Sea Series

This selection presents undulating, deeply lobed leaves splashed with intense color has a dense and compact habit great for gardens, containers and mixed borders

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus' attractive deeply cut lobed leaves remain buttery yellow in color with showy coppery-bronze variegation and tinges of coral-pink throughout the year. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus is an herbaceous annual with a mounded form. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant. The flowers of this plant may actually detract from its ornamental features, so they can be removed as they appear. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus is recommended for the following landscape applications

  • Mass Planting
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting
  • Hanging Baskets

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus will grow to be about 20 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 20 inches apart. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.

This plant does best in partial shade to shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by cuttings however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Under The Sea™ Copper Coral Coleus is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor containers and hanging baskets. It can be used either as 'filler' or as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, depending on the height and form of the other plants used in the container planting. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.


PLANT - O - PEDIA

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus

Solenostemon scutellarioides 'Sea Urchin Neon'

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus foliage

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus foliage

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus foliage

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus foliage

Group/Class: Under the Sea Series

This selection presents undulating, narrow leaves splashed with intense color has a dense and compact habit great for gardens, containers and mixed borders

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus' attractive small twisted narrow leaves remain forest green in color with distinctive hot pink spots and tinges of creamy white throughout the year. Neither the flowers nor the fruit are ornamentally significant.

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus is an herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant. The flowers of this plant may actually detract from its ornamental features, so they can be removed as they appear. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus is recommended for the following landscape applications

  • Mass Planting
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting
  • Hanging Baskets

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus will grow to be about 10 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 8 inches apart. Although it's not a true annual, this fast-growing plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.

This plant performs well in both full sun and full shade. It requires an evenly moist well-drained soil for optimal growth, but will die in standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone over the growing season to conserve soil moisture. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by cuttings however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Under the Sea™ Sea Urchin Neon Coleus is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor containers and hanging baskets. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a canvas of foliage against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.


Many Uses For Coleus

Large pot of Coleus used for color – Legoland Winter Haven Florida Sept 2016

Large potted Coleus used for color at the Legoland theme park – Winter Haven Florida Sept 2016

7 Steps To Make A Colorful Coleus Frame

Instead of growing coleus outdoors in a bed or a container with a few varieties, how about a picture frame of coleus?

The folks over at Garden Gate Magazine show you how to create a frame filled with coleus in 7 steps.
Think of all the ways you could display this unique planting! Check it out via Garden Gate Magazine
The video below shows how to make a succulent picture frame. Making a coleus picture frame is basically the same, except you are using coleus. Enjoy!


Under The Sea Coleus

I live in Savannah Ga. I have been trying to find some of the Under The Sea Coleus but have had no luck. We have a place here that grows over 100 different coleus but even they can not get them. I have even tried to order on line but everyone is sold out. Anybody have any leads where I could fine some. Also if you have any how have they done? I have read they really take the sun and heat and hold up well.

I have 3 of them. I will have to go out and look at names. They are very nice.

I have Bonefish, Langostino, Red Coral and possibly Molten Coral. I also have Brooklyn Horror or Witch Doctor, which probably goes well with them. I got them at different places earlier in the season. They have done well, however, the colors are a bit different depending on the amount of sun. Red Coral is more like purple coral with a lot of sun.

I have to say that the Bonefish and Red Coral are fairly delicate and were a little harder to root cuttings.

This is a more resent picture

Gold Anenome Langostino Lime Shrimp

I just ordered several from Rosy Dawn Coleus, they send really nice plants. Sharon


This message was edited Feb 27, 2013 8:06 AM


Watch the video: 100+ MAYANA PLANT VARIETIES NAME IDENTIFICATION. 125 TRENDING COLEUS VARIETIES


Previous Article

Cypress: home care, transplant, reproduction, why it dries

Next Article

Growing Snap Peas – How To Grow Snap Peas