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:Cultivating Color Posted: Aug 11, 2015 09:52 AM Synopsis: Not everyone who lives in a dry climate wants a cactus garden. And not all cottage gardens are filled with pansies and peonies. Flowers by the Sea highlights ten tough perennial Salvias in pastels for low-water cottage gardens. The palette of drought-resistant choices includes sages with blue, lavender, peach, pink and yellow flowers for a soothing touch in your landscape.
Category:Ask Mr. Sage Posted: Aug 8, 2015 12:08 PM Synopsis: Some Salvia collectors want to obtain a broad range of sages including all the new introductions on the market. But Flowers by the Sea can't and doesn't want to grow all the new cultivars available, partly because there is a growing abundance of Salvia introductions. Instead, FBTS focuses on selecting the most superior new plants even when introducing its own hybrids in its series of Rainbow Jame Sages. Ask Mr. Sage is a regular feature based on calls and emails received by FBTS.
Category:Ask Mr. Sage Posted: Aug 6, 2015 04:15 PM Synopsis: Confusion about watering of plants is understandable, because moisture needs vary so much from one species to another. It also varies based on your local growing conditions. Ask Mr. Sage, a regular feature of the Everything Salvias blog at Flowers by the Sea Online Plant Nursery, explains the differences between the labels drought resistant, average water and water loving classifications for estimating water needs. Some FBTS average water plants also grow well in dry or damp settings.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Aug 4, 2015 02:55 PM Synopsis: Hummingbirds love the nectar of Salvias, particularly red ones, which they can see but bees can't. Also, unlike most birds, hummingbirds can taste sweets and seek out flowers that produce lots of sugary nectar. However, nectar can be difficult to come by during drought. The Salvia genus is well known for its bright flowers, rich nectar and many drought-tolerant plants. We suggest five bright red, drought-tolerant Salvias that hummingbirds love.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Jul 27, 2015 06:29 PM Synopsis: Fragrant Salvias and companion plants are excellent choices for entryways. Drought-tolerant plants from naturally dry climates, such as the three featured here, often have a pleasant, resinous fragrance that lingers in memory. Flowers by the Sea promotes water conservation by posting "drought praise" for favorite xeric (low water) plants. Here we suggest three pleasingly fragrant choices for a border making the entry to your home soothing and welcoming.
Category:Everything Salvias Blog Posted: Jul 27, 2015 03:00 AM Synopsis: Pollinators lose important food sources when Salvias and other nectar-rich flowers are destroyed by spider mites. This is Part 2 of a two-part series about understanding and overcoming these dangerous pests. Along with the non-chemical interventions described in Part 1 of this series, gardeners sometimes need the help of predatory insects and mites, insecticidal soaps and horticultural oils. Pesticides called miticides may also eventually be necessary, but should be the last resort.
Category:New at FBTS Posted: Jul 23, 2015 02:01 PM Synopsis: Erase your mental image of short plants in container flower gardens. New offerings at Flowers by the Sea include Salvias and companion plants from tiny to tall that thrive in containers as well as in the ground. Some of the plants featured here develop relatively shallow roots and perform well in smaller pots. But as root systems expand, repotting may be necessary more than one time, especially for shrubs. Learn more at our Everything Salvias Blog.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Jul 22, 2015 03:00 AM Synopsis: If you live in a semi-arid climate where rain is a vague memory and the soil is crunchy with gravel, you may find yourself praising the color and resilience of blue-tag plants from Flowers by the Sea. Not all of our drought tolerant plants fall into the blue-tag category. Yet ones that do are extremely capable at surviving with little water. FBTS explains plant care and offers five favorite drought-resistant species.
Category:Everything Salvias Blog Posted: Jul 19, 2015 11:12 AM Synopsis: Salvias often suffer when spider mites become legion in gardens. This is Part 1 of a two-part series about understanding and overcoming these dangerous pests. As summer temperatures rise, so do the numbers of the family Tetranychidae -- spider mites -- especially if conditions are dry. Controlling spider mites in your Salvia garden may be as simple as keeping plants hydrated and regularly spraying the little nippers off foliage. Or it may take a number of interventions, including biological controls, such as predatory mites, as well as the use of insecticidal soaps, oils and pesticides
Category:Container Gardening Posted: Jul 16, 2015 07:39 PM Synopsis: Assembling a new planter with fresh potting soil and young plants is a feel-good activity similar to moving into a new home. Each pot and property is full of promise. Placing a single plant or a grouping in the right size of pot is like selecting a starter home for it that will encourage healthy growth. The type of material a pot is made from also affects development. Flowers by the Sea Online Salvia Nursery explains how to choose correct pot sizes as well as pot styles, sizes, colors and arrangements. Don't miss The Flowerpot Men music video!
My plants arrived in perfect condition looking healthy they were well protected and traveled well all the way from the west coast to Virginia. What has really impressed me is as a novices Gardner there was so much information on the best planting and care of my new plants and each one identified. Thank you I look forward to spending many seasons enjoying my new plants
— suzanne Olsen
The plants came promptly and were in beautiful shape, nice and strong for planting. They look great.
I was very happy when my plants arrived to see that they were large and very well packed. I live in MIchigan so they had to come quite a distance. They arrived in perfect shape. They are doing well now that they are planted. I know that Michigan is fairly far north for these salvias but I hope they will make it.
I received my first order of salvias from FBTS this year. The quality of their plants far exceeds that of any other mail order source that I have used......and believe me, I do a ton of plants by mail order!!!!Packing was excellent and not as annoying as some places that use multiple rubber bands to hold things together!!! FBTS will be my first place to search for salvias now!Vicky
— Vicky Krost
I have made and received 2 orders from FBTS and have been very pleased. They have been nice, big plants and have adapted to the Oklahoma weather nicely. The last shipment was made when the weather was hot and the salvia plants looked liked they would rather have stayed in California but I planted them out quickly and they look very happy now. You can be sure I would not hesitate to order again.
— Carol Wycoff
Got my order this afternoon. Everything was great, much better than I expected. Thanks for the extra keikis. Many of your keikis were bigger and more advanced than some 2 1/2-3 inch potted orchids I've received from other mail-order nurseries at 3 times the price.
— Jay Press
The plants I received yesterday arrived in great shape, thanks for the extra care you took in packing! I've purchased quite a few salvias recently but can't comment much on any of them yet as they're all too new. I'm trying a variety and excited to see if they all survive the winter here in Portland, Oregon. Thanks again.
— Janice Watanabe
Had heard great things and decided to try you guys!! So glad I did...I am so extremely delighted with the size and condition of the plants I received!!!! I will definitely attract more hummingbirds with these perfect plants!!! Thank you so much I am a very happy customer!!!!
— Melanie Brimhall
The packaging was great, the plants healthy and delivery was as promised. You've also asked me to review the individual plants but that will have to be later after they've grown in my garden - looking forward to see how they perform.
— David Swingle
Although the plants from FBTS are smaller than you would get if you bought them in gallons, they go into the ground really well! I recently redid an area of the front yard with a combination of gallon plants from the local nursery and smaller plants from FBTS, and while almost all the plants from gallon pots look stressed and partially died back, the plants from FBTS all look happy and healthy....