salvia - fall planting?

newbie_in_nj(6b E/Central NJ)September 20, 2008

I've read that Salvia are best planted in the spring particularly in Zone 6 as they are prone to succomb their first winter if not well established.

Is this information corrrect as a general rule in Zone 6 with wet winters?

Can a Salvia suitable for my zone be purchased NOW and overwintered in a pot that's either well protected on a deck or in an unheated garage?

I'll be buying some in spring that aren't hardy in my zone just for hummingbirds but wanted to garner some of your experience in case I could purchase something like Salvia "Maraschino" and other bush sages while they're on sale right now.

Thanks in advance for "sage advice" from the Salvia Forum regulars!

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newbie in nj
Depends on which Salvia your looking at,but your correct
with spring planting for your zone.Plant Hardy Salvias
for your area unless you are looking for Annuals like,
S.Farinacea "Victoria" or "Evolution" and of course
S.splendens even woodies like S.microphylla,greggii.
Don't be afraid to experiment there are lots of microclimates that can go against the norm.

    Bookmark   September 20, 2008 at 10:44PM
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Some of the bush sages like Maraschino are pretty hardy in New Jersey.

What is your soil like and does it hold water in the winter? If you have very free draining sandy soil you could plant something like Maraschino deep and let the soil protect it, but only if you have dry soil.

While folks do winter over in garages dieback sages like leucantha and guaranitica in New Jersey they are winter well established plants that have had a season of growth and in good sized pots. The kind of rooted cuttings offered on-line are terribly young for such a treatment and probably wouldn't survive.

We have several expanding salvia gardens in the Philadelphia area, one of them is public. You might consider visiting and seeing what is going on.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 12:30PM
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rich_dufresne(z7 NC)


Where are these Philadelphia Salvia gardens?

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 12:56PM
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They are across the river from Philadelphia at Palmyra Cove Nature Park. Many of the plants there were acquired from you and used for propagation or at least at your recommendation. Unfortunately at this point there are no photos on their website. If you are curious about what is growing I can drum up a list. There are constraints at the site, super well drained sandy soil, lots of deer, and most of the plants are beyond the reach of the hose. All in all a fun challenge, but somewhat limiting when it comes to plant selection, even among salvias.

And by the way, I'm always up for testing new species.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2008 at 4:50PM
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rich_dufresne(z7 NC)

I think I'd like to see that list. I need around 6-7 months to generate some plants to swap. I got mostly seed from the trip to Cabrillo.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 12:13AM
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Ok, I'll pass it along.

    Bookmark   September 23, 2008 at 8:21AM
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I have mild wet winters and it is definitely the WET that is the issue with supposedly hardy salvias! As mentioned, well-drained soil is pretty much essential for overwintering anything other than the real toughies in the hardy perennial group, such as S forsskaolii, S dolichantha etc. Microphylla types should be OK in your climate (probably not the variegated ones, though) with sharp drainage, and don't prune the dead bits off in the spring till you can see where the new growth is coming. I find S greggii harder to overwinter, but a lot of the S x jamensis vars do OK. There are others, but go softly softly and see how you get on or you could waste a lot of money!!

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 7:49AM
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