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Products > Salvia leucophylla 'Amethyst Bluff'
Salvia leucophylla 'Amethyst Bluff' - Purple Sage

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  
Image of Salvia leucophylla 'Amethyst Bluff'
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae) (Mints)
Origin: California (U.S.A.)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Purple
Bloomtime: Spring
Height: 6-10 feet
Width: 10-15 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Seaside: Yes
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): No Irrigation required
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
Salvia leucophylla 'Amethyst Bluff' (Purple Sage) - 'Amethyst Bluff' is a large native California salvia with aromatic silvery foliage and 12 inch long, vivid purple-pink flower spikes. Starts out as a low-mounding shrub, eventually reaches up to 10 feet in height and continues to spread out laterally, up to 15 feet wide.

This highly versatile shrub is ideally suited for full sun and tolerates fairly heavy soils and occasional summer irrigation and is cold hardy to 20-25 F (Sunset zones 18-24). This a great large selection of the species that attracts hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. It works well in floral arrangements and is a perfect choice for sunny slopes and banks where it can sprawl freely and provide some erosion control.

Salvia leucophylla grows naturally within the coastal sage plant community along the lower elevations of the coastal ranges of California south into Baja California. The type specimen for the species was collected near Santa Barbara, California by Scottish botanist David Douglas (who Douglas Fir was named for) who collected plants along the Pacific coast on three separate expeditions from 1823 until 1834. It was officially described by American botanist Edward Lee Greene in 1892.

The name Salvia comes from the Latin name used by Pliny for the plant and comes from the Latin word 'salvere' meaning "to save" in reference to the long-believed healing properties of several Sage species and the specific epithet is from the Greek words 'leukos' meaning "shining" or "white" and 'phyllon' meaning leaf for the white leaves. The common name Purple Sage refers to the pale purple flowers and it is also sometimes called Gray Sage for the whitish gray leaves.

This selection of purple sage by horticulturist Carol Bornstein from the coastal Bluffs of Point Sal in northern Santa Barbara County. We grew this plant from 2001 until 2003. 

This information about Salvia leucophylla 'Amethyst Bluff' displayed on this web page is based on research we have conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations we have made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens visited, as well how our crops have performed in containers in the nursery field. Where appropriate, we will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share cultural information that would aid others in growing this plant.