Salvia clevelandii

Salvia clevelandii

Salvia  clevelandii: An open upright shrub, 60-80cm H from California with very fragrant leaves and sky blue flowers all summer and autumn.
Salvia clevelandii
Salvia clevelandii










Salvia clevelandii is an interesting small shrub from California with lovely  fragrant leaves.

Flowers: are sky blue, grouped in a complex whorl around the stem, giving them a globular appearance. There could be many whorls of flowers along the stem in a verticillata structure.
Each flower has the stamens exerted, the  stems are green. These are also fragrant with interesting oils within the glands. Flowering begins in spring , continuing through summer and into autumn.
These globular flowers are a magnet for bees and other pollinating insects

Calyces: are a green/ blue/grey colour, often coloured red/ brown on exposed sides. The leafy green bracts remain until the whole of the globes has opened.   After the flowers have finished the globe of calyces  dry out and remain until cut down.

Leaves: are lineal, slightly pointed at the tip with fine crenations along the edges, a light grey/ green colour and very fragrant from the oil glands within the leaf – a very distinctive pleasant fragrance.
Surfaces are fissured to catch any moisture, guiding that moisture down towards the stems and roots. Most stems are well clothed, until stems become woody.

Salvia clevelandii is one of the parents to ‘Celestial Blue’ and ‘Allen Chickering’ giving them their fragrant leaves.
A good rounded sturdy shrub to have in the foreground or in the middle of the bed with other perennials. Enjoying full sun, plant with either vibrant colours of crimsons, yellows and cerise pinks for a colourful mix or whites, pale pinks and other mauves for a pastel mix of colours.
Plant in full sun  in well drained soil.  They dislike wet feet.
S. clevelandii is tough and hardy  for summer heat and winter cold, with standing frosts well. These wide open flowers really attract the bees.

As the shrub has a fairly neat structure, at the end of autumn, the only pruning  will be to trim and neaten. Old flower stems need to be cut off and any dead or twiggy stems cleaned out. Feed and mulch well to keep the root area cool during the hot summer months.

Propagation: is usually by tip cuttings from new young green growth in spring and autumn. Once the stem has become woody, cuttings rarely root.

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