Purple deadnettle

Common Name:

deadnettle, purple

Scientific Name:

Lamium purpureum






Winter annual herb common in turf and ornamentals, and dormant crop fields. Leaves are ovate with a broadly acute leaf apex (pointed leaf tip) and lightly pubescent. Leaves stalked (petiolate) at lower portion of plant and leaf stems decreasing in length as they move up the stem. Stems square, as with all mint species. Inflorescence produced at apex of plant with solitary flowers produced in the leaf axils. Flowers light purple in color with long throat, bilaterally symmetrical. Plant turns purple as it ages, especially after the onset of flowering.


Purple deadnettle is a common winter annual weed, especially in turf that is not mown or mown infrequently throughout the winter and early spring. Easily distinguised by its bilaterally symmetrical light purple flowers, square stem, and down turned leaves. Similar to henbit and ground ivy. Compared to henbit, purple deadnettle has down turned leaves, velvety pubescent leaves, and light purple flowers. Compared to ground ivy, purple deadnettle has an upright growth habit, whereas, ground ivy has a creeping prostrate habit.