Salvia Guaranitica or Black and Blue Sage, Low Maintenance Perennial with Gorgeous Black and Blue Flowers.
Black and Blue Salvia
Black and Blue Salvia
Have you ever seen a flower and you knew you had to add it to your yard or garden? My mother-in-law had a beautiful back yard . She had a landscape architect help her with her landscaping. One day as I was admiring the work she had done I saw the most beautiful dark blue bushy flower with a slight scent to it. The stems are black which contrast with the deep blue flowers and evergreen leaves. She also had some beautiful white azaleas and daffodils blooming. I asked her what the blue plant was but she could not remember. It took a few days of scouring the internet and flower books until I finally found the black and blue Salvia or Salvia Guaranitica. That is a mouthful for such a delicate flower.
If there is a perfect flower this may be it. It spreads fast, grows tall, is deer proof, attracts hummingbirds and is so easy to share.
Growing Salvia Guaranitica
This gorgeous perennial so easy to grow. It divides by underground tubers that resembles a black peanut!!!!. I took some tubers from my husband's mother's yard and planted it at my home hoping it would take the next spring. Sure enough in early April little fuzzy green leaves started to emerge and by summer I had gorgeous blue flowers with a black outer covering. I now know you have to be sure to get roots along with the tuber or it will not grow.
One morning when I went out to work in the garden I heard a whirring noise. I looked up and thought it was a bee but it was the most beautiful hummingbird.I have never had hummingbirds in my garden without using a special feeder. I have become very used to the sound of the sweet bird. It also attracts butterflies and songbirds. One of the best things about my plant is that deer are not at all interested in it. The deer have become a major problem for my husband and I as we try to add some color to our lake home. The Salvia is the perfect solution.
This plant can be grown as a thrilling backdrop to your garden or in a pot on your sunny porch!
If you rub the flowers together in your hand it smells of anise. Now here is the neat thing. Anise is used to get rid of pests. People use it in their homes to rid them of pests. How is that for the perfect plant? It has a smell similar to black licorice.
So there you have it an easy care perennial with all the pluses and almost no negatives. Thats what I call the perfect flower!!!
This plant becomes bushy growing from 3 to 5 feet. It is very drought tolerant and easy to care for needing four hours of sun each day. I have been able to take transplants to my family and lake home. Blue Anise is tolerant to Zone 7b. It makes a gorgeous backdrop for any perennial garden and returns faithfully every year. If you live in the northern zones you can dig up some tubers or plant a cutting and grow in a sunny location until you are ready to set it out next year.
It will take full sun to dappled shade and would look beautiful against yellow or red flowers such as Red Coneflowers or Black Eyed susan or Rudbeckia. I like to grow Peacock Orchids and they are awesome against the Salvia.
Images of Black and Blue Salvia
Where to Grow
The Salvia or Blue Anise needs little care once established. I always trim back the spent flowers and fertilize when I water about once a month during growing season. I never worry about it when we travel. It is gorgeous against our brick side porch.
Every time I take a cutting it seems to come right up and even flower within weeks. In the winter the first frost takes it toil and I cut it to the ground. This and or early Spring would be a great time to gather tubers with roots attached..
It is hardy in zones 7b to 11. You can take some tubers in for the winter and store in your garage. Just replant after the danger of frost is gone if you live in colder areas.
I often plant in pots and just set my pots plants and all in the garage till the first warm day of Spring.
It blooms mid Spring to Mid Fall and I have even heard of it overwintering outside in New York!!!
The Salvia spread by rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs. As stated previously it is easy to take cuttings of these and even softwood cuttings and have them grow.
You can also collect spent flowers, allow the seed heads to dry and collect seeds. You won't go wrong with this one.
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