Empire Purple Sage flowers
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Plant Height: 12 inches
Flower Height: 18 inches
Spacing: 15 inches
Hardiness Zone: (annual)
Other Names: Ornamental Sage, Tropical Sage
A fine salvia producing large spikes of purple blooms with dark purple calyces all season; a beautiful border or edging plant with its compact, dense form, looks fantastic in containers
Empire Purple Sage has masses of beautiful spikes of purple tubular flowers with deep purple calyces rising above the foliage from late spring to early fall, which are most effective when planted in groupings. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its attractive serrated heart-shaped leaves remain green in color throughout the season. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Empire Purple Sage is an herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant. Trim off the flower heads after they fade and die to encourage more blooms late into the season. It is a good choice for attracting bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Empire Purple Sage is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- Border Edging
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Empire Purple Sage will grow to be about 12 inches tall at maturity extending to 18 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 18 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 15 inches apart. Although it's not a true annual, this plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under typical garden conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Empire Purple Sage is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers and foliage against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.