Chaparral Sage

Salvia clevelandii

chaparral sage

Chaparral sage has wonderful foliage fragrance, though the flowers are not terribly fragrant. It’s an evergreen salvia, and the flowers are similar to horsemint (it is a relative).

Its flowers occur among elevated stems and they are much higher than the plant. The flowers are light to medium purple.

With its fragrant foliage, it’s a great one to plant near the sidewalk for a sensory experience when you brush past it.

Chaparral sage is about 3 feet tall and wide, so give it plenty of space. It wants full sun and very low water. It does tolerate our alkaline soil but does not like our clay soils. If you do want to amend the soil, do it with a sandy soil amendment. It’s great in rocky soil that doesn’t contain a lot of organic matter. It’s suited for the decomposed granite beds some of us are creating. Or plant in a container with good drainage and some grit from decomposed granite.

Be cautious about water, since they do not tolerate over watering and will rot with too much.