The microphylla

warddaApril 18, 2007

Because of a big project planned for this May in a sandy xeric area, I had posted a question about which greggii and microphylla might be good for this cold end of zone 7. Richard gave me a nicely detailed reply with a number of recommendations. I didn't have a lot of past experience with microphylla. Only Wild Watermelon and San Carlos Festival have been established in the garden. So I wasn't really prepared for the diversity in this species. Somewhere I read there were several very distinct populations and that the species itself was quite widespread in Mexico. Microphylla Orange Door and neurepia seem to share a singular vigor and the leaves seem similar with the latters leaves being much more pointy. At least at this stage they are very different from Wild Watermelon,San Carlos Festival, Hot Lips, or any of several others.

So can anyone direct me to a place where I can find out more? Not knowing the story bothers me a bit.

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rich_dufresne(z7 NC)

Salvia microphylla neurepia was formerly given varietal status by Epling. This variety is found mostly in the center of the range, and many collected forms have deltoid leaves. These include the deltoid-leaved form I collected in Hidalgo at a fairly low elevation, the form designated as neurepia collected by Yucca-Do, Hoja Grande (also by Yucca-Do), Orange Door (Yucca-Do again), and San Carlos Festival (Yucca-Do again). Wild Watermelon was collected at a very high location by Martin Grantham on Cerro Potosi, the highest peak in northeastern Mexico at a subalpine level.

They are all very tough and cold tolerant except my Hidalgo collection, which has good heat and humidity tolerance.

Hot Lips is a true microphylla from a high elevation in Oaxaca, and the Huntington form with the thick, soft stems and minty scent is also from Oaxaca or Belize and is the most tender of all microphyllas in cultivation right now. Hot lips is one of the most tough and durable forms. These last two look a lot alike except for the adaption to high and low elevation.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2007 at 11:11PM
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Thanks Richard. Maybe I'll take some of those high mountain forms and have them associate with the low elevation forms and see what results.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2007 at 2:03PM
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