Salvias Forever

Finally, it looks and feels like spring! There is still time to find and plant some great plants that will bloom spring, summer and fall. Salvias are among these great types of plants.

They are also known as sages. The most common are: Pineapple Sage, Mexican Bush Sage, Autumn Sage, Scarlet or Lipstick sage, Mealy Cup Sage and Garden Sage. These plants make up an increasingly popular group of shrubby perennials, which do well in alkaline soil and dry conditions. Growing from 15 inches to 6 feet high, depending on the type you select, they can fill blank spots in your home landscape with color. All they need is sunshine, and not even a full day at that, for they will do well in light afternoon shade. Once established, they take little care or water. This is one of the plants I use to get my landscaping to the point that it can do without me, if heavily mulched, for at least three weeks in the hot Texas summers!

Most salvia will die down in the early winter. After the foliage dies back in the late fall, I cut them back to within two or three inches of the ground and remulch them for a little extra winter protection. But in true perennial form, they rise again with the coming of spring! New growth comes from the roots. Any longer limbs that get stuck under the mulch will root and start their own little plants to be shared with friends if the plants do not fit in your flower bed. Try some of these Texas-friendly plants. You will not be disappointed, and they can be with you forever!

Written by Nancy Fenton, Master Gardener.