Home & Garden

August 2, 2014

New Front Yard: Autumn sage blooms spring until frost

This hummingbird favorite adds color and charm to low-water gardens.

This is one part in a weekly series featuring the UC Davis Arboretum “New Front Yard” series, 41 drought-tolerant and beautiful plants well adapted to our region.

Red autumn sage

Salvia greggii “Flame”

Size: Under 4 feet tall

Bloom season: Spring, summer, fall

Pruning needs: Remove old flower stalks. Prune to maintain compact shape.

Exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Water needs: Once established, water deeply every two weeks.

Snapshot: Its nickname is autumn sage, but that belies its long bloom season. This colorful shrub actually produces loads of bright orange-red flowers from spring until frost. These showy blooms are a hummingbird magnet. Beneficial insects like them, too. This drought- and heat-tolerant favorite thrives in Sacramento gardens with little care or water. You can see specimens in bloom in the Arboretum’s Terrace Garden and the Ruth Risdon Storer Valley-Wise Garden on the UC Davis campus.

• For more on the New Front Yard, click on arboretum.ucdavis.edu.

Debbie Arrington

More online

See photo galleries of the arboretum’s Community Favorites and Arboretum All-Stars at sacbee.com/home_garden .

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