Xeriscaping is the art of landscaping with plants that are well adapted to dry growing conditions. Global warming and drought are increasingly affecting home and public landscapes throughout the nation. Consequently, many gardeners are focusing on plants that are attractive yet survive or even thrive when water is limited. The Salvia (true sage) genus is huge and includes many choices for waterwise gardening. Our Xeric Choices articles include historical perspectives on this late 20th century gardening technique as well as suggestions for drought-tolerant Salvias and companions. Please feel free to contact us if you would like to share your experiences with xeriscape.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Sep 8, 2015 06:56 PM Synopsis: Bring on the sun. Bring on the heat. Bring on the drought-resistant Salvia groundcovers.Flowers by the Sea offers a short list of top groundcovers from around the world for fighting drought. They come from Asia, California, Mexico and Morocco in lavender, purple and pink to do battle against the boring brown caused by water shortage. Similar to gravel, bark chip or pine needle mulch, these groundcovers discourage weeds, cool soil, conserve moisture and add color to gardens. They are living mulch.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Aug 25, 2015 08:16 AM Synopsis: Searching for shade-tolerant plants is difficult. Finding ones that grow well in dry conditions, especially as groundcovers, is even more challenging. Flowers by the Sea talks about different types of shade and four drought-resistant perennials for these varying levels of sun exposure. It also explains how to search the company's extensive product menu.
Late summer is a good time to plant at the coolest times of day. Settling in Autumn Sage (Salvia greggii) and Mountain Sage (S. microphylla) before Indian summer will give their roots a chance for strong growth so they can withstand winter's chill and leaf out again next spring. These drought-resistant species are closely related and hybridize freely when they meet. They also cross with other sages they encounter. FBTS details seven pink and purple varieties that bloom off and on spring to fall.
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: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:Xeric Choices Posted: Jul 14, 2015 06:00 AM Synopsis: Eco-vigilantes. That's what some newspapers call smartphone users who post photos and videos tagged droughtshaming on Twitter and other social media documenting careless water use by celebrities, everyday homeowners and businesses, especially in Southern California.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Dec 23, 2012 01:43 PM Synopsis: Native plants are the best ones for local conditions. But sometimes boundaries designating what is native may be artificial. Here are five outstanding Xeric Salvias for Southern California, including one, not far over the Baja border, that offers intense drought resistance and violet-blue flowers.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Dec 21, 2012 01:18 PM Synopsis: Xeric Salvias come to Flowers by the Sea from Africa, Asia, the Canary Islands, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, Mexico, Central and South America, Arizona, California and Texas. All are selected for their beauty as well as their ability to endure harsh conditions. This fourth post about xeriscape gardening suggests attractive groupings of Xeric Salvias and companion plants. Our suggestions should give you an idea about how to color coordinate a xeriscape garden and set up a rhythm in the plantings.
Category:Xeric Choices Posted: Dec 19, 2012 11:49 AM Synopsis: To create a successful xeriscape garden, planning and design are essential. Planning helps you make better choices, which saves time, money and effort as well as water. A little bit of wisdom from ancient Native American practices doesn’t hurt either. While soil improvement is always helpful, it should be moderate for xeric Salvias, such as Autumn Sage and Mealy Cup Sage. Finally, pruning and thinning, strategic groupings of plants for frugal watering and mulching for protection against severe heat or winter chill all were key to ancient Southwestern agriculture as well as modern xeriscaping.
When I first ordered these plants they were on back order. True to their word, the company sent me an email when they were available again. They arrived on the specified date in beautiful condition. The plants were healthy and ready to be planted....
The wait was longer than I expected like felt two weeks due to their shipping schedule, but it was worth it. Overall very leafy for small pots and two of the salvias are in full bloom with half a dozen flower stems since I planted them in mid June. The other one, rhythm and blue, I think it is a late bloomer. I'll consider ordering again if they survives through the winter outside.
Thank you for the extra time and care in making sure that the plants arrived in excellent condition. The vigorous roots of each plant readily lend themselves to organic inoculants (mycorrhizae) and soil amendments (compost). Just by observing them in pots, it is my novice opinion that the xeric nature of some of the shipment might be tempered by digging an extra deep/wide planting hole for i...
— Jimmy Brooks
I have always been pleased with the plants and the service that I have received from FBTS. This time is no exception. I immediately planted two of my three plants in pots and am looking forward to watching them grow and bloom. The third plant will be planted in early summer when the ground dries out since it is very sensitive to too much water.
— Rebecca H Field
Lovely salvia plants, two out of three of them extra lush, and very well packaged!
— Marcy S.
I gloriously pleased with the site and the plants. The plants were HEALTHY large, and three of them were blooming and one had set seed. I couldn't be happier. The species were not the normal salvias and I can't wait for them to get large. There was a difference on one salvia between its description on the site and what conditions were on the tag. I called and they said that it was a new plan...
— Mara Eurich
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 decided to overhaul a large sun garden in the front of my new home. After removing all of the existing plants and weeds, I realized that I had quite a bit more space to fill than I originally anticipated. Every gardeners dream! More space! So I began looking for perennials I have wanted for a long time and found FBTS had two kniphofia that were unavailable locally. I had my reservati...
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....
— Brooke M
All four Salvias arrived in excellent condition. Set out immediately and noticed great root structure in all as I removed from pot. Set out in fall in Texas. First freeze scheduled for week of 11-12-14. Mulched well. Crossing fingers. NH
— Nancy Hancock
Great service, outstanding selection. I'd order from them again.