Host an Event Volunteer Join Tickets

Suppport the plant database you love!

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
2 ratings

Friday - March 11, 2011

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Edible Plants, Herbs/Forbs
Title: Information about Cedar Sage from Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I am new to the Austin area and was wondering about cedar sage (salvia roemeriana). Is this plant considered aromatic, non-aromatic of chia? And, other than the edible flower are other parts of the plants used?

ANSWER:

Follow this plant link Salvia roemeriana (Cedar sage) to our page on this plant to learn about growing season, blooming, etc. It is aromatic, as it belongs to the Lamiaceae, or mint, family. This is also why the plant is considered highly deer-resistant, because deer don't ordinarily approach aromatic plants, unless they are really hungry, which is usually. This USDA Plant Profile map shows Cedar Sage as being native to this part of the state.

We must be a little out of things, because the only time we had heard of "chia" was in reference to the funny little animals that "grew" fur. However, we did a little more searching and found this from drweil.com:

"Chia is an edible seed that comes from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, a member of the mint family that grows abundantly in southern Mexico. You may have seen chia sprouts growing on the novelty planters called Chia Pets, but historically, the seeds have been the most important part of the plant. In pre-Columbian times they were a main component of the Aztec and Mayan diets and were the basic survival ration of Aztec warriors. I've read that one tablespoon was believed to sustain an individual for 24 hours. The Aztecs also used chia medicinally to stimulate saliva flow and to relieve joint pain and sore skin."

So, insofar as chia is a member of the Salvia genus, it is related to Cedar Sage. It is, however, native to southern Mexico and therefore not in our Native Plant Database. The seeds are apparently the important thing, considered to be a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids. We could find no reference to the seeds of Cedar Sage as being a similar source, but neither did we find anything saying that their seeds were poisonous. So, if you're interested, we guess you could give them a try. We learn something new every day.

 

From the Image Gallery


Cedar sage
Salvia roemeriana

Cedar sage
Salvia roemeriana

Cedar sage
Salvia roemeriana

Cedar sage
Salvia roemeriana

More Edible Plants Questions

Growing Avocados in South Texas
April 24, 2015 - What types of avocados can be grown in South Texas?
view the full question and answer

Jersalem artichoke as a medicinal herb
February 05, 2011 - I am having trouble with high cholesterol and coming up on being borderline diabetic and I am overweight. I know that Jerusalum Artichoke helps lower blood sugar. Am into herbs and J.A. is hard to l...
view the full question and answer

Nectar from Lonicera sempervirens edible from Fairfax VA
June 01, 2011 - Is the nectar from Lonicera sempervirens edible?
view the full question and answer

Is horseherb (Calyptocarpus vialis) edible?
April 09, 2008 - Hello, I find horse-herb everywhere. Is it edible, too? Thanks!
view the full question and answer

Looking for a supplier for Mustang Grape vine in Austin, TX>
April 02, 2012 - I'm looking for a supplier in Austin that will have a Mustang Grape Vine seed or plant for purchase. I found Natives of Texas in Kerrville, but if you know of a supplier in Austin, that would be pre...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.