Favorite Salvia

monsoon99(Z9 CA)February 14, 2011

What is your favorite darkest,deepest blue salvia? I am looking to plant two sizes - one that gets as large as 3 by 3 (or so) and one that stays smaller. I like Yugoslavian cutleaf sage, NAME: Salvia jurisicii and Giant-flowered purple sage (dark pink) NAME: Salvia pachyphylla. Any comments on these two? Where can I buy rarer salvia in southern california?

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deep___roots(ca9/sunset15)

There's mexicana, which grows best in some shade, and isn't the most hardy.

Then there is this one, which is hardy and spreads nicely and can take the sun...the bad news is I lost the tag, but look at the black stems...maybe that will help in IDing it. It is one of my favorites for sure.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 1:52PM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

Salvia corrugata is one of the more shrubby types with really deep blue flowers, but doesn't bloom all year round like some others. For my money, you can't beat Salvia 'Indigo Spires', a taller growing more herbaceous type that can easily get 5 feet tall. I also like Salvia uliginosa for tall bloom, but this one isn't as deep a blue.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 1:56PM
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sautesmom

High Country Gardens has the best selection, here is a search on "blue"

Carla in Sac

Here is a link that might be useful: http://plants.highcountrygardens.com/search?w=salvia+blue&x=23&y=7&__utma=181331006.443893442.1286899804.1293562762.1297714305.4&__utmz=181331006.1297714305.4.4.utmcsr%3Dgoogle%7Cutmccn%3D%28organic%29%7Cutmcmd%3Dorganic%7Cutmctr%3Dhigh+country+gardens&__utmb=181331006.3.10.1297714305&__utmc=181331006&PHPSESSID=2405a96e3f05f90ab909576d68d5b8ab

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 3:14PM
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dicot

I've said this in other GW forums, I think Salvia patens is the truest blue perennial I know of, but certain cultivars of Salvia chamedroyides come close.

patens

chamedroyides

These two Mexican sages seem so underplanted in comparison with their paisanos S. leucantha and S. guarantica in SoCal, but I'm not sure why. I love S. pachyphylla, wish I had it here. But it's called rose sage for a reason, it's rose colored. I've never heard of a blue one, but that sure wouldn't stop me from planting 6 of them if I had a source.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 5:19PM
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gobluedjm

I have a chamaedryoides also with the gray foilage. It stands out with all the purples and reds salvias I have. Its not quite as bright at dicot's but could be my monitor.
Another blue is salvia ecuador...don't know the botanical name. I got it at HD. It gets tall about 3 feet but isn't frost tolerant but comes back very quickly in spring.

I couldn't get Indigo Spires to go here, not sure if heat in August or frost in winter.

If you get near Ventura you might try the nursery in the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Nopalito nursery

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 9:46PM
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dicot

I think my pic is of the 'Marine Blue' cultivar of Salvia chamedroyides.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 11:14PM
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wcgypsy(10 / Sunset 23)

Salvia sagittata is pretty cool also.....if I'd ever figured out how in the world to post a pic on this site, I'd show you...lol..

Here is a link that might be useful: salvia sagittata

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 1:23AM
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monsoon99(Z9 CA)

Thanks everyone. I have indigo spires on my list now. Great resource sautesmom, I just wish highcountrygardens was local but I loved their variety. I think I saw dicot's Salvia patens on their site. The hard part will be making a final choice among these lovely plants.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 1:06PM
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wcgypsy(10 / Sunset 23)

You asked about where to find the 'rarer' salvias...if you get really serious about the salvias, you may want to check out the annual 'Salvia Spectacular' at Fullerton Arboretum in Sept. If you want a trip up to the Santa Cruz area, go to the annual Mother's Day weekend sale at Cabrillo College in Aptos. At both of those places you will find the larget selection all at one time. Other places that carry salvias are Pearson's in Vista, Buena Creek Gardens in San Marcos...Piergrossi's used to be my main source, but they're gone now, unfortunately. You could also check over on the salvias forum...

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 1:35PM
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Dick_Sonia(Sunset 17)

This would appear to be S. guaranitica 'Black and Blue.' It's a common salvia at California garden centers, which increases my level of confidence on the ID.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 3:32PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Yes it looks like 'Black and Blue'. This one spread EVERYWHERE in one of my rose beds. I'm still trying to dig it all out. The flowers are so beautiful, but what an invasive beastie it has been.

The soil here is really, really good, so maybe that is why.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 7:22PM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

Annie's Annuals, which also does mail order, is another good source for Salvias in general. In my experience, Salvia patens is a more demanding plant with too short of a bloom season compared to the others listed. It may just be that it needs regular dead heading and continuous fertilizer to keep blooming, something the other blue flowering ones haven't required to perform well in my experience. Check out the S. corrugata as well, it really is one of the deepest blue flowering Salvias that I have seen. There is also a new dwarfer version of the S. 'Indigo Spires' on the market, but I forget what it is called, it also has either "Indigo" or "Spires" in the name.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 9:42PM
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gobluedjm

I think Nopalito in Ventura has the black and blue. It seems I saw it there last year and didn't get it cuz I read its invasive. I thought it was very unique with the black stems.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 10:28PM
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wcgypsy(10 / Sunset 23)

Black and Blue is so popular it can be found most anywhere. The 'dwarf' version of 'Indigo Spires' is 'Mystic Spires' and in my experience is not really much smaller at all. S. patens does not do well at all in my area....at least for me. I tried various forms of patens 3 times and called it quits.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 10:42PM
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organicgardendreams(z 10)

This winter I planted salvia Black & Blue, which is my favorite salvia in my front yard and was really looking forward to it flowering the first time this spring, because I love the black & blue flowers, that will look great with my pink roses. It is also supposed to attract humming birds, which is nice.

After hearing here twice that it is invasive I am getting a little bit scared, though. I don't want it to invade my roses and other plants in the front yard. Any ideas what I can do to contain it? Or "is everything lost" the moment it is planted in the ground like it is with mint?

Christina

Here is a link that might be useful: Organic Garden Dreams

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 1:31AM
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monsoon99(Z9 CA)

I love the Salvia Corrugata. Bahia is your experience with it that it has a dense compact shape? I prefer something that will not become leggy at its full height.

Christina: I have never seen such beautiful icebergs with so many blooms! What do you do to them?

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 1:52AM
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organicgardendreams(z 10)

monsoon99, thanks you very much for your compliment on my Iceberg roses shown on my blog!

Actually I don't do anything special, except that we have really bad dirt and therefore we dig big holes (up to 3 feet wide and 2 feet deep) for the roses and replace the soil, aehhhh stones, with organic soil for rose planting. I know you are usually not supposed to do that but we have no choice and it seems to work in my garden. Besides that I fertilize them regularly with organic fertilizer for roses and once they get organic alfalfa meal in spring and mulch with compost up to 3 inch high if possible. And then last but not least they get watered well. I don't spray and completely garden organically. Most of my roses grow on their own-roots and are not grafted and that seem to work best in my yard. I noticed that in general the roses become more healthy and bloom more prolifically over the years. The Iceberg roses are 3 years old now.

I am thinking of writing about rose fertilizing and rose care in general and go into a little bit more detail on my blog. Maybe you want to stay tuned?

Forgot to mention in my previous comment about the salvias that the photos in this thread are awesome. Thanks everyone for posting. That is really enabling!

Christina

Here is a link that might be useful: Organic Garden Dreams

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 10:33AM
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dan_staley(5b/SS 2b AHS 6-7)

Aside from Salvia azurea and the focus on blues here, I enjoy the long season on my Salvia 'Furman's Red'.

Dan

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 11:24PM
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bahia(SF Bay Area)

Slavia corrugata will stay quite dense and full if grown in full sun, but will tend towards legginess if grown with less than full sun, and also blooms less. I typically tip pinch it up until about 2 months before blooming season to keep it more hedge-like, and it easily will grow to 4~5 feet tall by across with age. Thanks for remembering the name of Salvia 'Mystic Spires"... In my personal experience growing both here in the SF Bay Area, there is no comparison between the ultimate mature size of this compared to S. 'Indigo Spires'. Indigo Spires can grow 5~6 feet tall in my garden, while Mystic Spires tops out at only 3 feet tall. I also find it useful to continuously tip pinch both types to keep them lower and bushy and continuously blooming, and find Mystic Spires a less long lived plant, and tend to treat it as a short lived 2 year perennial to be replaced every other year. It may have to do with it not accepting less than full sun in winter, which seems to weaken it.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2011 at 2:15PM
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queerbychoice(USDA 9a/Sunset 8 (CA))

My favorite is Salvia sonomensis, which also happens to be the only one I've managed to keep alive for multiple years rather than just six months or less. It's prostrate, with flower stalks less than a foot high. It's very pretty all year round.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2011 at 10:10PM
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PRO
Propaganda Garden Design

I like almost all of them so I couldn't pick a favorite but one that I really like that isn't seen that often is Salvia semiatrata.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2011 at 4:32PM
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