Salvia, or scarlet sage, is an annual flower best known for its spiky form and bright color that is dependable in any climate and adaptable to full sun or partial shade with equal ease. Salvia comes in brilliant red, creamy white, rose-colored, and purplish variants.
Common name: scarlet sage
Color: Salvia comes in brilliant red, creamy white, rose-colored, and purplish variants.
Bloom time: Blooms summer to frost
Height: Depending upon variety, salvia will grow from eight inches to three feet tall.
Difficulty level: Easy
Planting & Care
Salvia are often grown from seeds. Salvia can be directly seeded into your flower garden, or seeded indoors for transplanting later. For earlier blooms, start indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost.
Sunlight: Full sun or partial shade
Soil: They grow well in average or better soil, but the soil should drain well.
Water: Keep soil moist throughout the growing season.
Temprature: 70 degrees to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Fertilizer: Apply any organic fertilizer once in 2 month.
- Salvia are often grown from seeds.
- Salvia can be directly seeded into your flower garden, or seeded indoors for transplanting later.
- For earlier blooms, start indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost.
- Sow Salvia seeds early in the season.
- Some varieties require light to germinate, and the seed should be spread upon the top of the soil.
- Water lightly as the fine seeds can wash away, or penetrate too deeply into the soil.
- Transplant Salvia into your garden after the last frost date for your area.
- Space them 10-20" apart, depending upon species.
- Give them plenty of room to grow and show off their bright blooms.
- Salvia can also be propagated by division, which is best done in the spring.
Harvesting: To grow the best leaves for cooking, harvest the new growth often and remove flower stalks as they appear. To dry, clip stalks from the top 1/3 of the plant in spring before flowering begins. Hang upside down in a well-ventilated area until dry or lay out on a baking sheet and place in a warm oven for several hours.
- Salvia plants like full sun.
- They grow well in average or better soil, but the soil should drain well.
- Add a general purpose fertilizer when planting them, then once a month after that.
- Once your Salvia plants are established, they should grow well with few problems.
- Keep the soil moist to slightly dry.
- Water them during dry periods, once or twice per week.
- Keep them well weeded, or apply a 2-3 inch layer of mulch for a tidy appearance.
- Many Salvia are heavy seeders.
- Place them in an area where you want them to re-seed and return each year.
Their ability to bloom well in light shade makes them especially useful with pastel colors that tend to fade in the sun.
- Many sages have been used medicinally in cultures around the world.
- Most of the aromatic sages have anti-inflammatory properties.
- They are often a flavoring for sausage, stuffing, pasta and vegetable dishes, and are especially good with beans.
- The flowers are edible as well - use them as a garnish in salads or tempura.
- Ornamental salvias are used for massing, borders, containers, accents, and cut flowers.
- They are extremely attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies.
It possesses strong psychoactive properties.