Meadow Sage (Salvia superba)


Full sun to light shade


Early summer. again in fall


Widely tolerant as long as not soggy


18 to 30 inches




Zone 4


Borders. mass plantings. cut flowers


Avoid excessively droughty or soggy soil. Divide at 3 to 4 years to maintain vigor. Prune hard after flowering for second flush of blooms.




This member of the sage family is gaining in popularity due to its ease of care, attractive appearance, and long bloom period. It forms dense clumps that reach 24 to 36 inches. Violet-colored spikes appear from early summer to mid fall. They will grow in any good soil but water- logged conditions should be avoided as well as excessively droughty conditions. It does best in full to part sun. It is very attractive planted in large masses and will also do well in a middle or back of the border location. It can be used as a cut flower. Staking may be needed in windy locations - especially in richer soils.

Plants should be divided every 3 or 4 years to maintain vigor. Look for dying out in the center of a clump as an indication that division is needed. Division is best done in the spring. References vary on the hardiness of this species - some claim zone 4 while others claim 5. I have had very good luck with plants placed in a light soil. Avoiding damp locations and providing a winter mulch is likely to ensure survival.

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