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New at FBTS: Salvias & Companions for Containers

New at FBTS: Salvias & Companions for Containers
Category: New at FBTS

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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.

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 on their own or in larger planters when grown with a number of companions. As root systems expand, repotting may be necessary more than one time, especially for shrubs that have large root systems when mature.

Handy Tips About Container Growing
For a simple overview about selecting pot size, please watch our short video Repotting Salvias: The Basics. Although the temptation, on first potting, is to use a container large enough to accommodate a plant at maturity, that's a crucial mistake as Kermit Carter of FBTS explains in our video. 

Click here for additional advise about choosing potting mix and here for information concerning pot selection and arrangement.

Please remember that measurements listed in the brief plant profiles below reflect mature size when planted in ground. Container planting tends to miniaturize height and spread of Salvias and other plants, particularly shrubs.

10 New Choices for Potting
To help you with garden planning, we've divided these new selections by the amount of sun exposure they need. Information is included about watering preferences and small wildlife that frequent these species. Eight of them are popular with hummingbirds.

Full Sun
Wine Red Arbol del Brujo (Iochroma cyaneum 'Wine Red') Zones 9 to 11

  • Subshrub with red flowers blooming spring to summer
  • Mid-green, veined foliage
  • 72 inches tall and 60 inches wide in bloom
  • Heat-tolerant 
  • Average to ample watering
  • Hummingbirds

Orange Peel Jessamine (Cestrum 'Orange Peel') Zones 7 to 9

  • Subshrub with fragrant orange and yellow flowers blooming summer to fall
  • Mid-green foliage
  • 96 inches tall and 48 inches wide in bloom
  • Heat tolerant
  • Average watering
  • Hummingbirds

Full Sun to Partial Shade
Turkish Mountain Sage (Salvia hypargeia) Zones 5 to 9 

  • Perennial with lavender flowers bloom in summer
  • Gray-green basal foliage
  • 12 inches tall and wide in bloom
  • Heat and cold-tolerant 
  • Average watering
  • Butterflies

Lyrical Silvertone Meadow Sage (Salvia nemorosa 'Lyrical Silvertone') Zones 5 to 9

  • Perennial with violet-blue flowers bloom spring to summer
  • Fine, fragrant, mid-green foliage
  • 24 inches tall and wide in bloom
  • Heat-tolerant 
  • Average to ample watering 
  • Butterflies and honeybees

Boutin Roseleaf Sage (Salvia involucrata 'Boutin') Zones 8 to 10

  • Subshrub with mulberry pink flowers blooming summer to fall
  • Heart-shaped leaves, burgundy stems 
  • 72 inches tall and 48 inches wide in bloom
  • Average to ample watering 
  • Hummingbirds

Dorset Lavender Gentian Sage (Salvia patens 'Chilcombe') Zones 8 to 11

  • Perennial with deep lavender flowers blooming in summer
  • Mid-green foliage
  • 18 inches tall and wide in bloom
  • Average to ample watering
  • Hummingbirds

Tall Red Colombian Sage (Salvia rubescens subsp. dolichothrix) Zones 9 to 11

  • Shrub with crimson red flowers blooming spring to fall
  • Moderately yellowish green foliage
  • 84 inches tall and 48 inches wide in bloom
  • Average to ample water
  • Honeybees and hummingbirds

Hardy Pink & Yellow Gloxinia (Sinningia sellovii 'Pink & Yellow') Zones 8 to 11

  • Perennial with creamy pink flowers blooming in summer
  • Dark green foliage
  • 36 inches tall and 18 inches wide in bloom
  • Average to ample water
  • Hummingbirds

Partial to Full Shade
Pink Ice Gentian Sage (Salvia patens 'Pink Ice') Zones 8 to 11

  • Perennial with rare pale pink flowers blooming summer to fall
  • Partial shade
  • Mid-green foliage
  • 18 inches tall and wide in bloom
  • Average to ample water
  • Hummingbirds


Light Plum Scarlet Sage (Salvia splendens van houttei 'Light Plum') Zones 9 to 11

  • Perennial with pinkish-plum flowers blooming spring to fall
  • Partial to full shade
  • Yellowish green foliage
  • 60 inches tall and 24 inches wide in bloom
  • Average to ample water
  • Heat tolerant
  • Hummingbirds

An Ancient Yet Innovative Practice
We don't all have large yards in which to grow the plants we love. Planting in containers is an excellent, age-old solution to small space gardening. 

Historical records show that cultivation of trees and shrubs in pots dates back to at least ancient Egypt. Many centuries later, it's a practice that remains popular and innovative.

Whether you garden on a balcony or acreage, please feel free to contact us if you have questions about any of our plants or cultivating beauty in containers.