I have two of these, and one is blooming. I know what seeds I planted, but the flower doesn't match any pictures I found. I have a picture of the foliage, which I hope will help.
The foliage and flower color would seem to indicate is Salvia interrupta or one of its cousins, in the same group as S. officinalis and S. candelabrum.
Could it be Ringens? It was late last night and I didn't look up the country of origin. Eastern Europe rather than China, sorry for the error. I looked at the flower again this morning, and there is a little bit of white on the throat - not as dramatic as the picture I saw on the web.
The seeds were supposed to be Ringens, and only 2 of them sprouted out of 10.
I've never grown or seen live plants of S. ringens, but the web images I've seen of it match.
I grow Salvia ringens, S. interrupta, S. candelabrum and one that is sold out here as Candelabra Sage (which is most likely a cross between S. ringens and S. candelabrum).
What you have there looks like S. ringens. The flower stems get very long.
S. interrupta tends to stay shorter (around 2.5' for me) and the flowers are different. The leaves are green not grayish green as in S. ringens.
S. ringens hails from the Balkans.
Thanks, SG. Does this plant set much seed? I saw bumblebees on it (I have more bumblebees than anything else!). I am withholding judgment on it until it is in full bloom - it has multiple flower stems with buds right now.
Where did you get the seeds? Nice plant!
I bought the seeds, I think from Specialty Perennials. I have two plants. If they produce enough seeds, I will make them available for trade on gardenweb. I think the plant doesn't produce a lot of seed, though.
I would bet that SG has seeds available, too.
Thanks, I was hoping I didn't send some oddball your way instead of the one you wanted! LOL