california native flora

a drought tolerant patio garden of mostly natives

Starlight Sage Journal

Salvia ‘Starlight’ – Starlight Sage

Mar 12, 2011. - Starlight Sage - Salvia 'Starlight'. Pot specimen.
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Starlight Sage is a fast growing shrub that takes sunshine and heat well. This hybrid was introduced by the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Gardens and is most likely a product of California natives “White Sage” (Salvia Apiana) and “Black Sage” (Salvia Mellifera).

Like other native sages this plant has distinctly fragrant foliage and whorls of long lasting tiny white flowers that attract all manner of wildlife. Hummingbirds, as one would expect, work this plant frequently but most recently I’ve seen a few different species of Bee spend time collecting pollen. Maybe I’ll try harder with insect identification but for now I’ll go with “wee fuzzy honey bee types” and “big black shiny bee types”, both of which seem non-threatening, haste ye back!

This sage does well in little to no water when planted in the ground but in a pot it’ll be fine with a good drink every couple of weeks. The pretty little white flowers appear in early spring and continue through the summer. A small 1 gallon specimen will grow fast to 4′ by 4′ in one year so it’s great if you are looking to fill space quickly with a valuable wildlife plant.

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Plant Meta Data

Common NameStarlight Sage
Botanic NameSalvia 'Starlight'
OriginCalifornia Hybrid
Bloom PeriodSpringSummer
Bloom Color
Light RequiredSun
Water ToleranceDrought
Potential Size (H x W)4' x 4'
NotesAttracts SongbirdsAttracts HummingbirdsAttracts BeesFragrant


Click image to enlarge

Mar 12, 2011. - Starlight Sage - Salvia 'Starlight'. Pot specimen.Dec 12, 2010. - Starlight Sage - Salvia 'Starlight'. Pot specimen.Sep 25, 2010. - Starlight Sage - Salvia 'Starlight'. Pot specimen.May 10, 2010. - Starlight Sage - Salvia 'Starlight'.