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Perovskia atriplicifolia Plant of Merit

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Kemper Code:  E540

Common Name: Russian sage
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Lamiaceae
Missouri Native: No
Native Range: Himalayas, western China
Height: 3 to 5 feet
Spread: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom Time: July - October   Bloom Data
Bloom Color: Lavender / blue
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low


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Plant Culture and Characteristics

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  Uses:       Wildlife:   Flowers:   Leaves:   Fruit:
Hedge Suitable as annual Attracts birds Has showy flowers Leaves colorful Has showy fruit
Shade tree Culinary herb Attracts Has fragrant flowers Leaves fragrant Fruit edible
Street tree Vegetable   hummingbirds Flowers not showy Good fall color   Other:
Flowering tree Water garden plant Attracts Good cut flower Evergreen Winter interest
Gr. cover (<1') Will naturalize   butterflies Good dried flower     Thorns or spines

General Culture:

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun. Tendency to flop is greatly increased by growing this plant in anything less than full sun. Drought tolerant. Cut back plants almost to the ground in early spring before new growth begins.

Noteworthy Characteristics:

Russian sage is a woody-based perennial of the mint family which typically grows 2-4' (less frequently to 5') tall and features finely-dissected, aromatic (when crushed), gray-green leaves on stiff, upright, square stems and whorls of two-lipped, tubular, light blue flowers tiered in branched, terminal panicles (12-15" high). Long summer bloom period. Perennial Plant Association Plant of the Year (1995).

Problems:

No serious insect or disease problems. Plants tend to sprawl or flop over as the summer progresses.

Uses:

Provides long summer bloom for the perennial border. Contrasts well with both pink (e.g., phlox, mallow or roses) and yellow (e.g., rudbeckia) perennials.

Missouri Botanical Garden, 2001-2011


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