Care for Mexican Sage

Almost every garden has a Mexican sage in it. And why not? A favorite of landscape designers, Salvia leucantha fills late summer and fall gardens with floral fireworks in various shades of velvety purple. By this time of the year, these work horses can look shabby and spent. Like many other sages that bloom at the same time, they benefit from being cut back. But in this case timing that trim can make the difference between rejuvenating the plant and killing it. Wait until new basal growth at the base of the plant is 6 to 8 inches tall before removing dry bloom spikes and tattered stems.

Other plants that benefit from similar treatment now when new growth is visible include penstemon, Verbena bonariensis, Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’, and other sages such as S. guaranitica ‘Black and Blue, pineapple sage (Salvia elegans) and S. ‘Indigo Spires’ and the shorter ‘Mystic Spires’.


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