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Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia
Salvia columbariae Benth.
California sage, Chia, Golden chia
USDA Symbol: SACO6
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Tiny, blue flowers are aggregated in several balls along the square stems of this 4-20 in. annual. The leaves are mostly basal, once or twice pinnate and velvety. California sage smells distinctly skunky.
Chia (pronounced chee-ah) is the common name for several Salvia species from which Indians made pinole; a meal ground from parched seeds. When steeped in water the seeds also produced a thick, mucilaginous drink.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Annual Habit: Herb Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun
, UT Native Distribution:
to extreme s.w. UT, AZ
& Sonoran Desert Native Habitat:
Open, dry, disturbed places
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Dry, well-drained soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available
PropagationDescription: Propagate by divisions, rooted sections, or seeds.
Seed Collection: Collect the seeds as the capsules begin to dry but before they have dropped the seeds. Spread seeds in thin layers to dry a few days before storing dry in sealed, refrigerated containers.
Seed Treatment: Seed treatment varies among ecotypes. Generally dry storage and a period of stratification aids germination.
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Native Seed Network
- Corvallis, OR
Record Last Modified: 2010-04-18
Research By: TWC Staff