In this video, Flowers by the Sea horticulturist and co-owner Kermit Carter explains a simple method for starting Salvias from seed. First, he mixes a pinch each of two powdered inoculants into enough potting soil for a plant. Carter explains that the inoculants combat bacterial diseases, strengthen roots and aid transfer of nutrients from the potting soil, which is a soilless mix containing peat, perlite and biofungicides. He places the soil in a short, 3 1/2-inch container and tamps it down gently so the pot is about half full. Next, he adds an inch of lava gravel mixed with perlite to improve drainage so seedlings won't rot. The final steps include scattering seeds on the lava mix, then applying an ultra-thin layer of horticultural grit, such as crushed granite, on top before watering. The grit keeps the seeds in place but allows sunlight to penetrate so they germinate.
FBTS Growing Salvia from Seed is part of the Views from the Garden video series published in the Everything Salvias blog of Flowers by the Sea, a horticultural farm and an online, mail order plant nursery.