One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A genus of North American perennial herbaceous plants (family Lamiaceae (Labiatae)), bearing spikes of pink or white flowers, with a persistent inflated calyx around the fruit; (also physostegia) a plant of this genus, especially the obedient plant, P. virginiana.
Mid 19th century; earliest use found in John Loudon (1783–1843), landscape gardener and horticultural writer. From scientific Latin Physostegia, genus name from physo- + ancient Greek στέγη roof + scientific Latin -ia, so called on account of the inflated calyx.
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