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Botanical Name:

Abutilon theophrasti

Common Name:

Velvetleaf,Butterprint,China jute,Chingma,Indian hemp,Pie-marker,Pie Marker,Chinese Lantern


Abutilon theophrasti (velvetleaf, velvet plant, velvetweed, Chinese jute, China jute, crown weed, buttonweed, lantern mallow, butterprint, pie-marker, or Indian mallow) is an annual plant in the family Malvaceae, native to southern Asia. Its specific epithet theophrasti commemorates the ancient Greek botanist-philosopher Theophrastus. Abutilon theophrasti is the type species of the genus Abutilon. Velvetleaf grows 3–8 feet tall on branched stout stems. Their stems are covered in downy hairs. It annually grows in the warmer seasons. It germinates in the spring, and flowers in the summer. This typically takes place between the months of July to September in certain locations. The leaves are large and heart-shaped with point tips at their ends. They grow at different points along the length of the stem or are alternated along the stem, the leaves are attached to thick, long stems, and when crushed, they release an odor.It has flowers that are yellow; they grow up to an inch in diameter with five petals attached at the base. The flowers grow on stalked, and can either be found in clusters or singled along where the stalk meets the leaf stem.Pod-like capsules produced by the plant consists of 12-15 wood segments that form cup-like rings. Through the maturation of the seeds, the segments remain joined, and when the seed are ready to be released, the outside of the capsule contains vertical slits which release mature seeds.   Flower and leaves   Abutilon theophrasti - MHNT   Schizocarp on a plant that grew in California.

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Bloom Time


Plant Type

Herb/Forb, Shrub

How to Grow


Mesic, Dry Mesic, Dry


Full Sun to Partial Shade





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