Salvia 'Tavistock' (coccinea)

Salvia  coccinea ‘Tavistock’

Salvia  coccinea ‘Tavistock’: a small shrubby perennial to 60cm H, enjoying a sunny position with coral coloured flowers in Summer.
Salvia coccinea 'Tavistock'
Salvia coccinea ‘Tavistock’

Salvia coccinea ‘Tavistock’ can be grown as an annual or  perennial if protected from winter weather.

Flowers: are semi tubular, being  a lovely 2 toned pink, but a more even colour between the hood and the bottom lobes. Stamens are clearly seen to be exerted from the hood.The bottom lobe is more cupped, and more of a coral colour. A pale patch is seen around the throat which guides the bees and insects further into the flower.

Flowers appear in mid spring, through summer and into autumn.
The flowering stem is held above the foliage to attract passing insects.

Calyces: are dark coloured on top and often green beneath. The colour is kept if planted in a sunny position – too much shade, the calyces become green. Lobes are thin, ribbed and pointed.
Each flower is held in a whorl of 6-8 flowers, well spaced but close together along the flowering stem.
The calyces remain after the flowers have dropped off, these dry during the summer and rattle in the wind.

Leaves: are a grass green colour, cordate in shape, slightly hairy, well veined with rounded crenations along the edges. Most stems are well clothed.

Salvia coccinea ‘Tavistock’ is a  wonderful plant to have in the border , always in flower, bees, moths and insects enjoy this Salvia – makes a wonderful display during the summer months, especially when grown en mass.
Plant with other  pale coloured perennials, white , purples and vivid blues also go well with these pink, coral coloured flowers.

Plant at the front of the bed either in a sunny protected position as it is frost tender as well as protecting from strong winds, or plant under deciduous trees in dappled shade.

At the end of the main flowering period, cut out any dead stems, cut off all flowering stems and cut back to a good green bud, to allow it to grow bushy during the cooler months.

Propagation : easily from tip cuttings. Although there are plenty of seed heads with copious amounts of seeds, they may not come true if other S. coccinea are planted near by, so cuttings are the best way to ensure the correct colour.

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