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Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear [5 Key Difference To Set Them Apart]

The skirmish between the perennials, Rose Campion vs Lambs Ear, is quickly escalating as a hot topic in the recent floral market due to their similarities.

From afar, the Rose Campion (Lychnis coronaria) and Lambs Ear (Stachys byzantine) radiate a bright appearance from the look-alike foliage. However, moving nearer, Lambs Ear features elongated and broader mounded leaves with fur-like hair, while Rose Campion leaves are narrower.

Look through the article to identify the plant you have in your garden and not be fooled by anyone in bringing the wrong plant.

Is Rose Campion The Same As Lambs Ear?

No, Rose Campion and Lambs Ear are not the same, given their different origins and families.

Although the resemblance is to its peak, analyzing the plant’s foliar and floral parts can make identification easier.

So here are some similarities and differences between Rose Campion and Lambs Ear to clear any confusion.

A. Rose Campion And Lambs Ear: Similarities

The Rose Campion is a short-lived perennial flower plant with identical growing conditions to the perennial Lambs Ear that is evergreen and grows in the USDA zone 4-8.

Since the hardiness zone is the same, Rose Campion and Lambs Ear share similar characteristics. Some of the features are as follows.

  • They both require direct sunlight to attain growth. But Rose Campion like shade during hot afternoon days.
  • Both plants love well-draining and aerated soil rich in organic compost.
  • Rose Campion and Lambs Ear are drought-tolerant that require watering once a month during the active season.
  • The propagation in both occurs by either division or seeds that can self-seed.
  • Flowers of Rose Campion and Lambs Ear come in magenta to purple color.
  • Young Rose Campion and Lambs Ear appear the same when not in bloom due to velvety leaves.
  • Moreover, Rose Campion and Lambs Ear are exotic plants in the United States.

B. Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear: 5 Major Differences

Most similarities between Rose Campion and Lambs Ear regard cultural needs, which might not help differentiate the plant physically.

So some of the distinct characteristics that set them apart are given below.

1. Origin and Family: Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear

The first difference to differentiate the plants apart is their originating area.

Rose Campion originally came from Europe and is native to Asia and southwestern Europe. In contrast, Lambs Ear is a native to Northern Iran and Turkey.

Secondly, Rose Campion belongs to the Caryophyllaceae family group, also called the pink or Carnation family.

Meanwhile, Lambs Ear is a member of the Lamiaceae family, making it a relative of culinary herbs like mint, basil, and sage.

2. Growth Habit: Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear

The growth pattern shown by Rose Campion is more erect than the clumping and mat-forming habit of Lambs Ear.

Also, the Rose Campion tends to grow up to 3 feet tall but spreads only up to 1 to 2 feet wide.

On the other hand, Lambs Ear attains a height of 3 feet with a width of 1 to 4 feet with mounded leaves that grow close to the ground.

3. Foliage Texture: Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear

The foliage structure is the distinctive feature that makes Rose Campion and Lambs Ear separation more accurate.

Rose Campion has oval-shaped leaves with approximately 5-inch length and silver-colored stems. The leaves are narrow and green, giving a soft woolen feel when touched.

In contrast, Lambs Ear has longer elongated leaves than Rose Campion, giving it the texture of Lambs Ear.

Also, Lambs Ear has velvety leaves with silver to grey hairs making it look fuzzy.

4. Flower Appearance: Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear

Another significant difference to help you determine the plants is noticing the flowers during the bloom time.

Rose Campion gives round petal blooms over a 3 feet long stalk from late spring to mid-summer. The color ranges from pink to magenta.
The flower and leaf of Rose Campion and Lambs Ear
The flower structure can help you identify the plant more distinctly.

Meanwhile, Lambs Ear has whorls of spiked flowers over a 9-inch stalk. It comes in the shade of pink, purple, and magenta.

The bloom time of Lambs Ear is shorter than Rose Campion, taking place from early summer to mid-summer.

5. Invasiveness: Rose Campion Vs Lambs Ear

Lambs Ear and Rose Campion are famous for their self-seeding capability. However, Lambs Ear always topped Rose Campion in invasiveness.

The foliage of Lambs Ear grows vigorously during the summer to produce the mounded compact leaves expanding across 1 to 2 feet in a single season. Thus, Lambs Ear is considered invasive.

In contrast, Rose Campion is not invasive if you deadhead the flowers before they bloom.

Also, Rose Campion is short-lived and will die in its second year of growth. So no need to worry much about it.

From Editorial Team

Extra Tips!

Mullein Pink, Rabbit’s Ear, Dusty Miller, and Crown Pink are other names for Rose Campion.

Meanwhile, Donkey’s Ears and Wolly Hedgenettle are other names for Lambs Ear.

Do not get confused if you hear these common names!