The cuphea hyssopifolia is a small shrub native to Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras. Its generic name derives from kyphos, curved, referring to the capsule of its fruits.
Apparently in the Mexican region of Oaxaca the Elfin herb is used to treat various types of pain such as the ones related to the stomach, kidneys and throat. In Veracruz it is used in folk medicine as a wound healing agent, indicated specifically for viper bites.
It is a species suitable for bonsai because it has very small leaves and a nice bloom. However, this shrub grows naturally in a compact and extended form, so it is sometimes cultivated as ground cover; this use of landscaping is to cover the soil with dense foliage so as the soil does not get water or nutrients and thus prevent weed growth. With this techniques it is also achieved an interesting decorative effect of vegetable carpet of different colors or of a unified color, depending on the flowering of the plants used for this purpose; in any case, the elfin herb generates a beautiful bloom which makes it suitable for its use in this ornamental sense.