Blue mist plant

Native to Mexico's high-elevation cloud forests, blue mist plant is an evergreen shrub with masses of purple flowers. These showy flowers make it a popular garden ornamental. However, blue mist plant has escaped cultivation and is now growing wild near Sydney and in New Zealand.

While relatively uncommon in Queensland gardens, blue mist plant may be in its early stages of naturalisation in North Queensland. It has the potential to become an invasive pest in cooler, upland areas of Queensland.

Blue mist plant is not a prohibited or restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014.

Scientific name

Bartlettina sordida


  • Evergreen shrub 1-2m tall.
  • Plant has masses of bright purple flowers.
  • Leaves are opposite, 11-25cm long, up to 25cm wide.


  • Prefers moist, fertile soils in warm temperate climates, generally in moist gullies and rainforest margins.


  • Relatively uncommon in Queensland but may have naturalised on Atherton Tablelands.

Life cycle

  • Produces large numbers of seed.
  • Flowers September-November.



  • No impact at present in Queensland, but potentially invasive.
  • Could become pest in disturbed habitats in upland rainforests.

How it is spread

  • Seeds spread easily by wind, flowing water and animals.


  • Call 13 25 23 if you find a plant you suspect may be blue mist plant to seek advice on control options.

Legal requirements

  • Blue mist plant is not a prohibited or restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014. However, by law, everyone has a general biosecurity obligation (GBO) to take reasonable and practical steps to minimise the risks associated with invasive plants and animals under their control.
  • Local governments must have a biosecurity plan that covers invasive plants and animals in their area. This plan may include actions to be taken on certain species. Some of these actions may be required under local laws. Contact your local government for more information.

Further information