Sunday, December 27, 2009

Scarlet Sage

Botanical name: Salvia coccinea
Other name: Lady-in-Red Salvia, Blood Sage, Texas Sage

Scarlet sage is a species of flowering plant in the mint family, Lamiaceae. A hardy annual or tender perennial, native to Texas, and found throughout the southern portion of the United States. In warmer climates, this variety tends to act as an annual. The fluorescent red tubular flowers are concentrated in whorls surrounding a square stem. It is widely cultivated as an ornamental.

How to grow
Scarlet sage is a good bedding plant and useful in borders where brilliant color is desired. This American mint is especially desirable in natural area gardens where it attracts butterflies and hummingbirds and maintains itself year after year without dominating or becoming invasive. The plant can be planted from seed and grown as an annual to USDA Zone 4. Will survive the winters in Zones 9 and 10 and sometimes in Zone 8. Will reseed itself annually in zones 6-8.

Plant tall: 2-3 ft
Light: Full Sun
Soil: Rich and well drained soil
Germination: 10-30 days
Optimum soil temperature for germination: 68-75F
Sowing depth: 1/16"
Blooming period: Early summer to first frost.