Nicotiana mutabilis | Ornamental Tobacco
There are over 65 species of Tobacco that hail from Australia, North America, and tropical South America. They are attractive plants with beautiful flowers and appealing foliage. All of them have tubular or trumpet-shaped flowers that come in nearly every color and most often open during the evening and and nighttime hours, sometimes releasing a pleasant fragrance. They can be used as specimen or bedding plants, in borders, woodland gardens, in containers, or for planting in masses or even as a focal point.
Nicotiana mutablis is an ornamental flowering tobacco plant from Brazil. This giant show-stopper blooms nearly year-round in warmer climates and will quickly and easily reach 5 ft- 7 ft tall, creating a sensational cloud of 1” blooms at least 3 ft across. In our garden it was as wide as it was tall. This is one of the only tobacco varieties in our collection that lives as a perennial in most zones! It’s an annual in cold-weather climates, and a short lived perennial in zones 8+.
Grows best in full sun in average, well-drained soil, but will tolerate light shade. Plant in rich soil for the best show. Each flower starts out white and as it ages turns to pale pink, then rose-red – with all colors appearing on the plant at the same time! When in full flower, there are hundreds of individual flowers that persist well into frost- it is a sight to see. The branches are physically sticky to the touch and give-off a sweet aroma that we find similar to chamomile. Best to sow indoors, or outdoors in spring after last frost.
Attracts butterflies, hawk-moths, and hummingbirds. Deer and rabbits won’t touch it.
This was not only one four favorite tobacco varieties, and is one of our favorite plants of all-time! We have fallen in love with it, so will be planting many, many more of these in our gardens, in addition to gifting seeds to anybody else we know with a garden!
Type: Annual or perennial
Sun exposure: Full sun
Mature height: 5-7 ft
Mature width: 3-3.5 ft
Hardiness zones: 8-11
Please note: All tobaccos should be considered poisonous to consume (smoking brings its own risks); some are extremely poisonous and have caused fatalities. Poisoning through intentional or accidental misuse of nicotine and products containing it is a relatively common occurrence. Related species may contain other toxic alkaloids, chemically similar to nicotine, so it is for this reason we suggest that you enjoy Nicotiana mutablis and other ornamental species of tobacco for their flowers only. Do NOT smoke these leaves.