Italian Everlasting (Helichrysum), the curry plant

helichrysum immortelle

The Italian everlasting (helichrysum) is a sub-shrub and also an herb, which is very interesting also for its cute little gold yellow flowers.

Italian everlasting Helichrysum facts

NameHelichrysum italicum
Family – Asteraceae
Type – perennial

Height – 1 ½ feet (50 cm)
Exposure – full sun
Soil – ordinary

Foliage – evergreen
Flowering – June to October

A Mediterranean plant, it is often grown as an annual.

Planting Italian everlasting

Italian everlasting, or helichrysum, loves arid regions, well-drained soil and very sunny spots.

Conversely, the Italian everlasting hates the cold or snow, because it wouldn’t survive it.

  • Italian everlasting is planted in fall or in spring, this isn’t important.
  • Propagation is through cuttings in summer.

Pruning Italian everlasting

Pruning isn’t really needed, all the more because Italian everlasting has a very slow growth.

But to keep a tight, compact bearing and a dense bunch, you can prune it at the end of winter so that you can give it a nice shape.

All there is to know about the Italian everlasting

Helichrysum is bushy and is well suited to perennial flower beds and also to growing in pots.

  • Easy to grow, it particularly appreciates surroundings that are under the influence of the sea.
  • Its distinctive fragrance is similar to that of curry.

Helichrysum comes from ancient Greek ‘Helios’ which means “sun” and ‘chrysos’ which means “gold”, referring to the gold yellow of its flowers.

If it is called Everlasting, it’s because its flowers when dried have such an extended lifespan that it becomes immortal

Its gray colored foliage, quite bright, sometimes reminds one of that of lavender.

Uses of helichrysum

Leaves are used to spice meals because its taste is very close to that of curry.

Take care though not to swallow the leaves since they are rather indigestible and can cause digestive disorders.

This plant is also used to produce essential oil extracts for its medicinal properties.

Smart tip about helichrysum

If you find caring for plants that require too much care a chore, splurge for helichrysum!