Meadow Sage

We sell hundreds of salvia plants each year, and with good reason.  Meadow sage is a dependable perennial plant that comes back year after year.  Their spikes of purple, blue or white flowers shoot up from the foliage in early summer, lasting for more than a month.  The rabbits don’t seem to touch them, and deer mostly
leave them alone because of their pungent smell and slightly hairy leaves.

Plant them in  average, well-drained soil in a sunny spot.  Care is also easy:  after the frost, cut down the wizened foliage.  To keep the plant looking fresh all season, cut the spent flower spikes back to the basal foliage in mid-summer.   Many cultivars will reward the gardener with a second flush of bloom.

During our recent trip to Connecticut to visit one of our growers, I was excited to see fields and fields of Salvia in bloom.  It was the perfect opportunity to make a collage comparing them.  Their attributes are listed below, along with the collage.

‘Blue Hill’:  Dense spikes of true blue flowers.  1.5 – 2′ tall.  Blooms June-July.

‘Snow Hill’:  White flowers on compact plants.  1.5′ tall.  Blooms June-July.

‘Marcus’:  Deep blue flowers on dwarf plants.  8-12″ tall.  Blooms a week or more after other cultivars.

‘East Friesland’:  Deep violet flowers.  1.5′ tall.  Blooms June-July

‘Mainacht‘ aka ‘May Night’:  Dark purple flowers.  1.5′ tall.  Blooms June-July.  Dependable re-bloomer.

‘Cardonna’:  Black flower stems, violet flowers.  2-2.5′ tall.  Blooms May-July.  A personal favorite.

Salvia collage

-Brad MacDonald