We began publishing our Everything Salvias blog in 2010 for your enjoyment and to help you "get it right" when growing sages that are often unavailable at local garden centers.
It seems like there is an endless bounty of stories to be told. But that's to be expected when covering a genus containing an estimated 900 species -- the largest group within the mint family (Lamiaceae). In addition to Salvias, we write about other species that are either mint family members or low-water companions for our many drought-tolerant Salvias. We welcome comments as well as suggestions for future blog posts.
To access articles rapidly based on your interests, please click on the categories below, which include do-it-yourself videos (Views from the Garden). If you subscribe to our RSS feed by clicking on the small orange button feed button
, you'll receive announcements when new blog articles appear. But please note: This is a dangerous place for a sage lover.
Category:Sage Experts Posted: Mar 28, 2016 03:23 PM Synopsis: Renowned hummingbird bander Nancy Newfield of southern Louisiana shares her journey from 1970s stay-at-home mom to citizen scientist and one of the nation's leading hummingbird researchers. This is the first article in a three-part series about Newfield's work and gardens, which abound with Salvias to feed hungry hummingbirds that overwinter in her suburban yard near New Orleans. It includes plant lists and the Louisiana Winter Hummingbird Project tally of banded hummingbirds from 1979 to 2015.
Category:Container Gardening Posted: Mar 10, 2016 04:50 PM Synopsis: Container plantings are welcome islands of color and fragrance whether in small or large yards. Their emergence signals the pleasures of summer, including icy glasses of lemonade. Potted plants have a mighty thirst, as well. Container garden plans for Salvias and companion plants need to factor in greater frequency of watering than the plants would receive in-ground.
Category:Getting Started with Salvias Posted: Feb 23, 2016 08:28 AM Synopsis: Salvias are a broad range of true sages in the mint family that grow worldwide. They include shrubs, perennials, annuals and subshrubs, which share both shrub and perennial characteristics. Flowers by the Sea, an online, mail-order Salvia nursery sells hundreds of Salvias.
Category:Butterflies in the Garden Posted: Feb 19, 2016 10:29 AM Synopsis: Wildscaping a butterfly-friendly garden in Southern California is an act of kindness, especially toward imperiled species. Gardeners from Santa Barbara southward may want to group coastal sage and chaparral plants in their butterfly gardens, because those are among favorite sources of nectar for adult butterflies and host plants for caterpillars. Sages are popular nectar choices. Plants, such as Milkweeds and Impatiens, that work well both as nectar providers and caterpillar hosts are important additions.
Category:Getting Started with Salvias Posted: Feb 13, 2016 02:43 PM Synopsis: Severe winter chill and summer heat coupled with extreme humidity are challenges that gardeners face in the Midwest. Many Salvias are excellent choices as long-blooming annuals in the region while others -- ones that can withstand cold winters -- are reliable perennials. Flowers by the Sea Online Plant Nursery explains the confusing Midwest boundaries from Ohio west to Kansas and North Dakota south to Missouri. It talks about the range of USDA Plant Hardiness Zones in the region and the kinds of sages that grow best there.
Category:Salvias Down South Posted: Feb 4, 2016 06:13 PM Synopsis: A little bit of a hot color warms the garden landscape; a lot sizzles. Salvias that are red, orange, salmon and intensely pink make eyes snap to attention when grown en masse or as highlights complementing cool-colored perennials. Texas is home to a number of tough, drought-resistant species that can make a garden look hot. In this article, Flowers by the Sea focuses on nine to light up southern landscapes.
Category:Quick Digs Posted: Jan 30, 2016 05:48 PM Synopsis: This is the first article in our new Quick Digs series about preparing for spring in Salvia gardens. As spring approaches and daylight grows longer, first steps for preparing Salvia gardening include recording sages already planted before planning new purchases, repotting cuttings and seedlings, inventorying garden tools and turning the compost heap. When the first new growth arrives, you'll be prepared to remove weeds before they choke sages and other perennials that are re-emerging.
Category:Sacred Sages Posted: Dec 18, 2015 09:57 AM Synopsis: Heading into the season of long, dark nights and candlelit holiday dinners, it is pleasant to think of the candelabra-shaped Jerusalem Sage (Salvia hierosolymitana) lit up with raspberry and pale pink flowers in spring. It's structure was likely an inspiration during Biblical times for design of the Jewish menorah. Jerusalem Sage grows well in moderate climates and has tasty leaves used in cooking. Historically and in culinary use, it bridges the Arab and Israeli cultures.
Category:Salvias Down South Posted: Dec 14, 2015 11:36 AM Synopsis: Winter is a good time for warm thoughts about rosy colors pinking up the landscape. Not only is pink pleasant, but it is soothing. As psychologists discovered in the late 20th century, it's also the color of calm. Researchers have identified at least one shade of pink -- a vivid color now known as drunk tank pink -- as lessening aggressive moods of people who are incarcerated. Pink is also a color used in serenity gardens. Flowers by the Sea details 15 pink sages here, some of which bloom in winter.
Category:New at FBTS Posted: Dec 7, 2015 04:11 PM Synopsis: Quick Look is a new shortcut on the Flowers by the Sea Online Nursery homepage that takes you quickly to galleries of Salvia groups in our online catalog. FBTS wants to make your shopping and gardening life easier.
I have now had gardens in four locations (Boston, Oregon, Palm Springs, and Mountain Center, CA) with plants from Flowers by the Sea. I LOVE Salvias, and there is no one I'd rather buy them from.Plants are shipped well, and in a timely fashion, always surprisingly large and always well-rooted, healthy specimens. The owners are knowledgeable and helpful, in fact, extraordinarily so. FBTS i...
— Nora Williams
This nursery should be the model for every other nursery. The plants they send are large, healthy, and ready to be planted after only a couple of days of recovery from shipping. There are so many ways in which their web site lets you find suitable plants for your garden. FBTS has species and varieties that cannot be found elsewhere. Every plant I've received from them has flourished. It wou...
— Mary Jo Ballator
I received my plant yesterday and it had been damaged during shipping afterwards I emailed the company and got a reply that they had processed a refund for my purchase no problems the whole thing was very easy once I receive the refused I will definitely be making another purchase. Thank you for your excellent customer service.
— Eric Phipps
Every time I order from fbts, the plants arrive and are beautiful, even after traveling across the US. I have been very satisfied with the plants I have ordered.
We ordered 15 plants. All arrived in excellent condition. If our local nurseries offered these plants, which they don't, 14 of the 15 would have already been in 2-gallon or larger containers and priced considerably higher. These are by far the best-grown, healthiest, and largest Salvias we've ever received in a shipment, from anyone.
— Louis Fry
I ordered black and blue back in April and was exceptionally pleased with the plants and the care taken in the packaging. The plants are thriving here in eastern NC and the hummingbirds love them. Thanks and I will keep you in mind next spring or maybe sooner.
I recently received my very first order from Flowers by the Sea Nursery in Northern California. It won't be my last. I had researched a lot online about Salivas and although many of the more exciting varieties seemed suitable for my climate -- I knew no nursery that grew them -- meaning I would have to try growing them from seed (not exactly my first choice). Then I found Flowers by the ...
— Dan Tyson
I ordered Agastache 'Ava' to plant in a memorial garden for a little girl bearing the same name. I could not be more pleased. The plants arrived healthy. One month after planting them, we were away for a week. It didn't rain that entire week and I thought the plants would have died. However, this variety is so hardy that not only did they survive, they bloomed with the most beautiful pink flowe...
— Rebecca Kyriazis
Ordered 7 plants, 4 different varieties of Salvia. From California to Wisconsin 5 days in a box and these plants looked better than what I can buy locally from a greenhouse. Absolutely gorgeous!!!Thank you Kermit and your team for great service and plants.
— Pete Tinsley
Amistad is THE perfect salvia--just a wonderful size, and it blooms like crazy, even here in Iowa! Now, if only my ruby-throated hummies would find it. Buying them later in the season, they didn't get the prime pieces of real estate, but I'm sure the little hummingbirds will love it as much as the others--especially once the babies come around for their piece of the pie!