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Salvia darcyi

Salvia darcyi:  An upright bushy herbaceous perennial 60 – 80cm H with vermillion/crimson flowers in summer and triangular leaves.

Salvia darcyi
Salvia darcyi

Salvia darcyi: is the parent to many popular hybrids including ‘Silkes Dream’ , ‘Penny’s Smile’ and ‘Josh’

Flowers:  are large and red/ vermilion or even crimson,with a broad lower lip, arranged in  terminal spikes at the end of long stems. Flowers can either be seen as opposite or form a simple whorl of 4 flowers, regularly spaced along the flowering stem. The flowering period extends over the spring/summer period into autumn, before becoming dormant in the cooler months.

Calyces: are green, slightly hairy, each lobe is pointed. The green colouring provides a good contrast with the vermillion coloured flowers. Often the lobes on the exposed side becomes coloured.  If the flowers are not pollinated, they will drop off, leaving a green flowering stem.
Leaves: are small but a broad triangular shape with a truncated base. These shaped leaves have been passed down to many of the hybrids.
Veins can be easily seen and small rounded crenations along the margins.

Although winter dormant, Salvia darcyi is a hardy perennial for a sunny position. When established it will expand to form a nice clump appearing each spring on long stems, which can become woody. It is best planted  behind small shrubs or shrubby groundcovers so  a mass of colour appears behind the edge of the bed.
Very bee and insect friendly.

Propagation: Tip cuttings should be taken in early summer so they can be rooted and established before going dormant in winter.