Salvia mellifera

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Salvia mellifera
Salvia mellifera
Salvia mellifera

Species Name: Salvia mellifera
Common Name: Black Sage

Easy to grow--likes poor soils and hot, dry areas. Found locally from the Santa Monica Mtns, Verdugos, Santa Susanas, and San Gabriel Mtns. Flowers can be white, blue, or lavender. Leaves are very fragrant.

Plant Family: Lamiaceae
Plant Type: Perennial
Height by Width: 5' H x 5' W
Growth Habit: Rounded, dense and upright
Deciduous/Evergreen: Evergreen
Growth Rate: Fast
Sun Exposure: Full sun
Soil Preference: Adaptable
Water Requirements: Drought-tolerant to occasional
Cold Hardy to: 15 degrees F
Flower Season: Spring/Summer
Flower Color: White to lavender
Endangered?: Not Listed
Distribution: Coastal California from Monterey to Baja
Natural Habitat: Coastal Sage Scrub, lower Chaparral below 3500'

Hummingbird iconA.jpg Songbird iconA.jpg Butterfly iconA.jpg Fragrant iconA.jpg Slope iconA.jpg Container iconA.jpg

Care and Maintenance

  • Introduced into cultivation in California by Theodore Payne.
  • From California Native Plants, Theodore Payne's 1941 catalog: "Leaves rather narrow, deep green, slightly crinkled. Flowers borne in whorls on erect stems, generally bluish lavender or white. In some localities a blue flowered form is found which is very superior. The plants offered here are raised from seed gathered from shrubs of this type in the Ojai Valley. Gallon cans, 40c."
Other Names
  • Bornstein, Carol, David Fross, and Bart O'Brien. California Native Plants for the Garden. Los Olivos, CA: Cachuma Press. 2005.