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Flaigg, Norman G.
Salvia farinacea Benth.
Mealy blue sage, Mealy sage, Mealycup sage
Synonym(s): Salvia earlei, Salvia farinacea var. farinacea, Salvia farinacea var. latifolia
USDA Symbol: safa2
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
This 2-3 ft. upright or sprawling perennial, usually forms a mound as wide as the plant is tall. Mealy sage is named for the mealy-white (sometimes purple) appearance of the sepals, which are covered with felted hairs. The blue flowers are 5-lobed and 2-lipped, 2/3–3/4 inch long, with 2 stamens and 1 pistil. They have the usual sage fragrance. The long, narrow leaves grow in clusters, out of which grow the flower stems. The leaves may or may not have teeth. Dark-blue to white, tubular flowers are densely congested in whorls along the upper stems, creating a 3-9 in. spike. Gray-green, lance-shaped leaves are numerous, especially in the lower portion of the plant.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Size Notes:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct
, TX Native Distribution:
C. & w. TX
& NM Native Habitat:
Prairie, Plains, Meadows, Pastures, Savannahs, Woodlands edge, Opening, Dry calcalreous substrates
Growing ConditionsWater Use:
Low Light Requirement:
Sun Soil Moisture:
Moist Soil pH:
Acidic (pH<6.8) Soil Description:
Limestone soils. Calcareous, Limestone-based, Caliche type, Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay. Conditions Comments:
Mealy blue sage grows well in perennial
borders and wildflower meadows. The foliage is aromatic and deer resistant. When new basal foliage appears, cut the old flower
stems to keep the plants lush. Will bloom off and on throughout the summer. Butterflies and hummingbirds enjoy the nectar. Mealy blue sage provides an attractive mass of color in beds, borders and naturalized areas. Wet soil will make the plant leggy and weak.
It is an excellent plant for a flower
bed, and is often planted in groupings to create an attractive mass of color. The leaves have a grayish cast which make a good contrast to lush green foliage of other plants. It is a good plant for a rock garden. Showy, Blooms ornamental, Mass planting, Perennial
garden. Use Wildlife:
Nectar-Hummingbirds, Nectar-Bees Conspicuous Flowers:
Butterflies , Hummingbirds Nectar Source:
PropagationPropagation Material: Seeds , Softwood Cuttings
Description: Propagate by seed or 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. This species does require light for germination.
Commercially Avail: yes
Maintenance: After an extended period of flowering, you may wish to prune it halfway back to produce thicker, more compact foliage and a shorter flowering plant. Pruning may delay flowering for several weeks, but it is important in preventing leggy plants.
Find Seed or Plants
Order seed of this species from Native American Seed and help support the Wildflower Center.
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
Mr. Smarty Plants says
Deer resistant, sun tolerant plants for landscaping
April 19, 2007
I live in Driftwood and am looking for flowering, deer-resistant plants for the northern side of my house; however the house turn just enough to the west that the flowerbed receives about 3 hours of a...
view the full question and answer
List of native perennial Texas flowers
March 13, 2006
Good day, I am searching for a list of native Texas flowers (preferably perennials) for a flower garden.
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From the National Suppliers Directory
According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
Far South Wholesale Nursery
- Austin, TX
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:
Fredericksburg Nature Center
- Fredericksburg, TXLady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
- Austin, TXTexas Discovery Gardens
- Dallas, TXSibley Nature Center
- Midland, TXPatsy Glenn Refuge
- Wimberley, TXNueces River Authority
- Uvalde, TXTexas Parks and Wildlife Department
- Austin, TXNPSOT - Fredericksburg Chapter
- Fredericksburg, TXNPSOT - Austin Chapter
- Austin, TXNative Seed Network
- Corvallis, ORJacob's Well Natural Area
- Wimberley, TXNPSOT - Williamson County Chapter
- Georgetown, TX
Herbarium Specimen(s)NPSOT 0370
Collected May 14, 1993 in Comal County by Mary Beth White
Wildflower Center Seed BankLBJWC-ENH-1
Collected 2009-05-21 in Lampasas County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
Record Last Modified: 2009-04-19
Research By: TWC Staff