There are about 900 species of annuals, perennials and soft-wooded evergreen shrubs in the genus Salvia, including many species used for culinary and medicinal herbs and as ornamental plants.
These attractive subshrubs (freezing to the ground in winter and sprouting back in spring) are hardy throughout Louisiana and thus can be grown as perennials or as container plants.
Most varieties begin to bloom in mid-to-late summer and continue to produce flowers until mid-winter.
The blooms will attract bees and some birds, pollinators which will keep your garden healthy all season long.
Salvia ‘Argentina Skies’ and Salvia ‘Lady in Red’ are my particular favorites; the green stem of Argentina Skies uniquely contrasts the light blue flowers, and the plant itself reproduces asexually via large underground tubers, so splitting plants to get more for your money is easy!
Lady in Red produces large, deep red blooms that are equally strikingly beautiful, but what puts this plant on my list of favorite Salvia cultivars is that it is a wildflower native to the southern United States (so it’s quite heat-resistant); furthermore, whether it’s planted in a garden or in a container, this variety’s red clusters are huge hummingbird magnets.
Greenman Dan can help you update your garden.