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Products > Salvia officinalis 'Superb'
Salvia officinalis 'Superb' - Superb Garden Sage
Image of Salvia officinalis 'Superb'
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Lamiaceae (Labiatae) (Mints)
Origin: Mediterranean (Europe)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Blue
Bloomtime: Summer
Fragrant Flowers: Yes
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: < 0 F
Salvia officinalis 'Superb' (Superb Sage) A robust perennial, evergreen subshrub to 3 feet tall with upright stems holding narrow 4-inch-long gray-green aromatic leaves topped by 1 inch long 2 lipped violet blue flowers in whorls on short spikes from mid spring to early summer.

Plant in full sun in a well-draining soil and irrigate infrequently - tolerates dry, alkaline and shallow soils but will suffer in winter if soils do not drain or if overwatered. Very cold hardy (-30 F) and useful down to USDA Zone 4. Plant in a location with good air circulation as it is prone to mildew if not. This is a very nice and showy plant for the perennial border or mixed in with other mediterranean climate shrubs. It attracts bees and butterflies the leaves can be used fresh or dried in cooking as a seasoning but use caution as it can also be toxic if used in excess.

Salvia officinalis has long been in cultivation for its medicinal and culinary use and more recently as an ornamental garden plant. Its native range is thought to have originated in southeastern Europe in the Balkan Peninsula and naturalized many millennia ago throughout the Mediterranean region, from the Iberia peninsula east to the Balkans and in northern Africa. The name Salvia comes from the name used by Pliny for a plant in the genus and comes from the Latin word 'salvere' meaning "to save" in reference to the long-believed healing properties of several Sage species. This species was originally described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753 and had been cultivated for centuries for its food and medicinal properties. The specific epithet "officinalis" refers to the plant's medicinal use as 'officina' was the word used for the storeroom of a monastery where herbs and medicines were stored and so plants so named are known for their medicinal or culinary value. Is called by the common names Sage, Garden Sage, Common Sage, Culinary Sage, Dalmatian Sage and Broadleaf Sage.

Salvia officinalis 'Superb' is a fantastic selection given to by Carol Bornstein when she was Director of the Nature Gardens at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. She noted that the plant was in the garden when she first arrived there in 2011 and that it had only been identified as Salvia officinalis with no cultivar name in their records. To designate the qualities of this plant we named it 'Superb' and have continued to grow it since receiving it in 2019. 

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