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Wasowski, Sally and Andy
Salvia dorrii (Kellogg) Abrams
Purple sage, Gray ball sage, Dorri sage, Desert sage
USDA Symbol: sado4
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
A many-branched sub-shrub, 2-3 ft. tall and often broader than high, with numerous silvery-gray leaves and rigid, often spiny branches. Deep blue-violet flowers rise in long, showy, spike-like clusters above the silvery foliage. A broad bush with many rigid, spine-tipped branches, silvery leaves, and bright blue to blue-violet bilaterally symmetrical flowers.
It is this sage, not sagebrush, that is referred to in Zane Greys classic Western, Riders of the Purple Sage. It is a handsome plant, pretty in leaf as well as in flower.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Leaf:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue
Bloom Time: May , Jun
AZ , CA , ID , NV , OR , UT , WA Native Distribution:
WA & OR, e. of the Cascades, to CA, e. to s.w. ID, UT & AZ Native Habitat:
Dry, open scabland & sagebrush areas USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
CaCO3 Tolerance: None
Soil Description: Dry, perfectly drained soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available
PropagationDescription: Propagate from seeds or softwood cuttings.
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 in sealed, refrigerated containers.
Seed Treatment: Generally, a cold-moist stratification period is required for germination of Salvia seed.
Commercially Avail: yes
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Record Modified: 2010-04-30
Research By: TWC Staff