Also known as California Blue Sage, this a fragrant rounded shrub whose leaves are sometimes used in cooking.
Flowers: J F M A M J J A S O N D
Status: Near Native
Origin: From the Southern California coastal mountain chaparral (such as in the Cleveland National Forest area) south into northern Baja California – a classic, chaparral fire dependent shrub.
Family: Lamiaceae, the mint family
Size: 3′ – 6′
Sun: Full sun to partial shade (shade from summer afternoon sun in the low desert)
Watering: Apply regular water
Soil: Prefers well drained with an organic surface mulch
Temperature: Heat tolerant only to 115 degrees F, Hardy to 10 degrees F
Pruning: Head back lightly in late fall or early winter
Disease and Pests: Nematodes, root rot, spittlebug on succulent stems especially if air circulation around plants is poor
Uses: Special value to native bees. Nectar source for bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Host for Alfalfa Looper Moth (Autographa californica), Bilobed Looper Moth (Megalographa biloba), Wavy-Lined Emerald (Synchlora aerata), the geometrid Pherne subpunctata, and the plume moth Anstenoptilia marmarodactyla
Notes: Difficult to grow in the low desert during summer. Oftentimes treated as an annual in Phoenix. Plant can be used much like culinary sage, with a deep flavor.
Photo by obmissy
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