Salvia ovalifolia var ovalifolia: A small erect open branched perennial 40-60cm H. with white or pale blue flowers in late summer.
Salvia ovalifolia var ovalifolia can have either white or pale blue flowers.
Flowers : are white or pale blue, small with a furry hood of soft hairs, the stigma curled back over the top. The bottom lobes are extended out flat with the 2 side lobes flared out and the middle lobe with a large split which helps to flare out the lobe, making it look larger. Although there isn’t any visible beeline, the throat are is indented and having an upright hood opens the throat area allowing bees and insects to enter the flower. The flattish middle lobe acts as a landing place for insects and bees.
Flowers are held in whorls of 6-8 flowers, 4 on each side of the green stem. These are held well above the foliage to attract passing bees, appearing in late spring over the summer period into autumn.
Calyces: are green which show off the white corollas beautifully. They are well ribbed with few hairs and well pointed lobes. If the flowers are not pollinated, they fall off leaving a flower stem which remains until cut off.
Leaves: are sessile lying opposite each other along the thin green stems. They are broad lanceolate in shape, a dull grass green, slightly shiny with distinct veins and rounded crenulations along the edges.
Salvia ovalifolia var ovalifolia An interesting small Salvia for the front of the garden bed or a pot to be moved around. Plant with other tender shrubs and perennials that would naturally grow on the forest floor in a woodland setting.
This is a small upright perennial for a semi shaded area or a sunny sheltered position as it is Frost tender and can become winter dormant in cold areas. if it does go down for winter, mark the position well so the plant isn’t accidentally dug up or trodden upon.
In late summer it’s time to tidy the plant but cutting off all the spent flowering stems, any dead or twiggy stems and clear way old leaves. Feed and mulch well to keep the root area warm over the cold season.
In spring, when the new growth appears, feed again and top up mulch to keep the root area cool over the hot dry summer months.
Propagation: usually by tip cuttings of new growth, taken over the spring and summer period.