Curry Plant Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
curry plant


The plant commonly known as curry plant is characterized by its silvery-gray, fine, needle-like foliage that resembles the leaves of lavender, though they belong to different plant families. The foliage grows densely, presenting a soft, velvety texture that contributes to the plant's overall silvery hue. During the blooming season, this plant displays vivid clusters of small, yellowish flowers that provide a striking contrast against the silver-colored leaves. These flowers take on a papery texture that persists, resembling small straw flowers, and they contribute to the name "everlasting" as they maintain their shape and color when dried. The scent of the curry plant is reminiscent of a mix between curry and a camphorous, herbaceous aroma, which is most pronounced when the leaves are lightly bruised or rubbed. This smell is a defining feature of the plant, but it is interesting to note that it is not related to the culinary curry powder and does not serve as a substitute in cooking. Overall, the curry plant has a bushy habit and may form an attractive mound in the garden, serving as a unique and aromatic feature in the landscape. The plant is also known for its toughness and ability to withstand challenging growing conditions once established.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Curry Plant, Italian Strawflower, Immortelle

    • Common names

      Helichrysum serotinum, Gnaphalium serotinum, Helichrysum angustifolium subsp. serotinum, Helichrysum italicum var. serotinum

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Curry plant, the common name of Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum, is not known to be toxic to humans. It is often used in cooking and traditional medicine without reports of adverse effects due to its ingestion. There are no common symptoms of poisoning because the plant is not considered poisonous. However, as with any plant material, individuals may have allergies or sensitivities, so it is always advisable to exercise caution with initial exposure.

    • To pets

      Curry plant, the common name of Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum, is not known to be toxic to pets. There is no widespread documentation on the toxicity of this plant to pets such as dogs and cats, and it is generally considered non-toxic. Therefore, ingestion of this plant by pets typically does not lead to poisoning, and related symptoms are not well-documented. However, pet owners should always monitor their pets for any signs of allergies or adverse reactions when they come in contact with new plants.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2 feet (60.96 cm)

    • Spread

      2 feet (60.96 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aromatherapy: The oil from the plant, known as immortelle or everlasting, is widely used in aromatherapy for its pleasant and uplifting fragrance.
    • Skin Care: Immortelle oil is often included in skin care products for its hydrating and rejuvenating properties.
    • Perfumery: Due to its distinct and lasting aroma, everlasting is a common ingredient in perfumes and fragrances.
    • Landscaping: The plant is drought-resistant and adds ornamental value to gardens and landscapes, with its silvery foliage and yellow flowers.
    • Crafts: The flowers retain their shape and color when dried, making them popular in dried floral arrangements and crafts.
    • Culinary Use: Although not as common, the leaves can be used as an herb to flavor Mediterranean dishes.
    • Eco-Friendly Dye: The flowers can be used to produce a natural yellow dye for textiles and crafts.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Anti-inflammatory: Helichrysum italicum, commonly known as Immortelle or Curry Plant, contains compounds that may help reduce inflammation.
    • Antioxidant: The plant has been shown to have antioxidant properties, which can help protect cells from damage caused by free radicals.
    • Antimicrobial: Some studies suggest it has the ability to inhibit growth of certain bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
    • Antispasmodic: It is believed to help relieve muscle spasms and cramps.
    • Wound healing: There are indications that it may promote healing of cuts, burns, and other wounds.
    • Analgesic: It may have pain-relieving effects.
    • Anti-allergic: Compounds in the plant may help relieve symptoms of allergic reactions.
    • Cytoprotective: Helichrysum italicum may help protect cells of the body from damage.
    • Expectorant: The plant might be useful in relieving respiratory conditions by assisting in expelling phlegm from the lungs.
    Please consult healthcare professionals for advice on treating medical conditions and before using any herbal remedies.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Floral Arrangements: Helichrysum italicum, commonly known as curry plant, is often used in dried flower arrangements thanks to its small, bright yellow flowers that retain their color and shape when dried.
    • Cooking Herb: Although named curry plant due to its aroma, it is not related to curry spices but can still be used in a culinary context to impart a mild curry flavor to dishes.
    • Companion Planting: Curry plant can be grown as a companion plant in gardens as its strong scent is believed to help repel certain pests and may protect neighboring plants.
    • Essential Oil Production: Curry plant is known for its essential oil, which is used in perfumery for its warm, earthy aroma resembling that of straw and curry spice.
    • Natural Dye: The flowers and leaves of the curry plant can be used to produce a natural yellow dye for coloring fabrics or crafts.
    • Tattoo Aftercare: The essential oil from curry plant, when diluted, has been traditionally used to moisturize the skin during the healing process of tattoos, although it is not widely recognized for this purpose.
    • Garden Ornamental: It's grown as an ornamental plant in gardens and pots for its silvery foliage and yellow flowers that add a Mediterranean touch to the landscape.
    • Aromatherapy: The distinct curry-like aroma of the plant is used in aroma diffusers to create a comforting and warm atmosphere in homes and spaces.
    • Feline Deterrent: The strong scent of curry plant can act as a natural deterrent for cats in the garden, helping to keep them away from certain areas.
    • Educational Tool: Curry plant is sometimes used in educational settings such as botanical gardens or schools to teach about plant taxonomy, essential oils, and xeriscaping due to its drought-resistant properties.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    Curry Plant is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    Curry Plant is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Eternal Life: Helichrysum italicum is often associated with immortality and eternal life due to its long-lasting nature and its common name, "Immortelle," which suggests something that never fades.
    • Healing: Known for its therapeutic properties, Immortelle symbolizes healing and recovery, often used in traditional medicine to treat various ailments.
    • Protection: In certain cultures, Immortelle is believed to have protective qualities, warding off negative energy and harmful influences.

Every 2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every year
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Curry plant (Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum) prefers well-drained soil and should not be overwatered. During its growing season in spring and summer, water thoroughly when the top inch of soil feels dry, approximately once a week, with reduced watering in fall and winter. A good drink for a potted curry plant is around 8-16 ounces, depending on the pot size, ensuring that any excess water drains away to prevent waterlogging. If growing in the ground, increase the amount to about half a gallon every two weeks, adjusting based on temperature and rainfall.

  • sunLight

    Curry plant thrives in full sun, requiring at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily for optimal growth. Place it in a spot where it receives unfiltered sunlight for most of the day, avoiding shaded areas. If growing indoors, a south-facing window is typically the best spot to ensure the curry plant gets enough light.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The curry plant is tolerant to a range of temperatures but prefers a temperate climate. It can usually survive in temperatures as low as 30 degrees Fahrenheit but may suffer if the temperature drops below freezing. The ideal temperature range for maintaining a healthy curry plant is between 60 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune the curry plant to maintain its shape and encourage bushier growth. The best time for pruning is in the late winter or early spring before new growth begins. It's advised to prune the plant lightly, removing dead or faded flowers and any overly long, leggy stems; do this once a year or as needed to keep the plant compact and healthy.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Curry plant (Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum) thrives best in well-draining soil composed of a mix of potting soil, sand, and peat, which will help prevent root rot and overwatering issues. The ideal soil pH for the curry plant is neutral to slightly alkaline, ranging from 6.6 to 7.8.

  • plantRepotting

    The curry plant (Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum) should be repotted every two to three years, or when it has outgrown its current container. It is vital to ensure the plant is not sitting in too large a pot as it prefers to be somewhat root-bound.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    The curry plant (Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum) is drought-tolerant and prefers low to moderate humidity levels. Avoid high humidity environments to prevent issues with rot and fungal diseases.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place curry plant in bright, direct light indoors.

    • Outdoor

      Grow curry plant in full sun to partial shade outside.

    • Hardiness zone

      8-11 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum, commonly known as Curry Plant, begins its life with seed germination, typically taking place in the spring or early summer in well-draining soil with adequate warmth and sunlight. Seedlings emerge and establish a root system before developing a rosette of silver-grey foliage, which is aromatic and reminiscent of curry. The plant enters a vegetative growth stage, maturing and producing characteristic lance-shaped leaves on branching stems. During the flowering stage, typically in summer, it produces clusters of small, bright yellow flowers that are attractive to pollinators. After pollination, these flowers set seed which may be dispersed by wind or wildlife. The plant can either be annual or perennial, with some individuals overwintering and resuming growth in the following spring, completing the life cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time


    • Propogation: Helichrysum italicum subsp. serotinum, commonly known as the curry plant, is typically propagated through the use of semi-ripe cuttings. This method involves selecting healthy, semi-ripe stems from the current year's growth in the late summer. Cuttings of about 3 to 5 inches (approximately 7.5 to 12.5 cm) are snipped just below a leaf node. The lower leaves are removed, and the cut end may be dipped in rooting hormone to encourage root development. The prepared cuttings are then inserted into a well-draining potting mix and kept moist and warm until rooting occurs. Providing a humidity dome or plastic covering can help maintain the necessary humidity levels. After a few weeks, when the cuttings have rooted, they can be transplanted into individual pots to grow on before being planted out in their final location.