Mealycup or Mealy Sage
Salvia farinacea ‘Blue Bedder’
Synonyms of Salvia farinacea (5) (Updated on 12-1-21 from Plants of the World Online): Salvia amabilis Kunth & C.D.Bouché, Salvia caesia Scheele, Salvia earlei Wooton & Standl., Salvia trichostyle Bisch., Salvia virgata Ortega
Salvia farinacea Benth. is the correct and accepted scientific name for this species of Salvia. It was named and described by George Bentham in Labiatarum Genera et Species in 1833.
Salvia farinacea is native to Texas, New Mexico, and the northeastern part of Mexico.
The genus, Salvia L., was named and described as such by Carl von Linnaeus in the first volume of the first edition of Species Plantarum in 1753.
As of 12-1-21 when this page was last updated, Plants of the World Online by Kew lists 1,010 species in the Salvia genus. It is a member of the plant family Lamiaceae with 233 genera. Those numbers could change as updates are made on POWO.
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I bought seeds of the Salvia farinacea ‘Blue Bedder’ from the Dollar General store in Leland, Mississippi in the spring of 2010 or 2011. I transplanted the seedlings in the corner bed next to the den at the mansion when they were big enough.
Origin: Northeast Mexico, New Mexico, and Texas
Zones: USDA Zones 7b-11 (5 to 40° F)
Size: 18-36” tall plus
Light: Sun to part shade
Soil: Average, well-drained soil. Slightly damp.
Water: Prefers regular watering.
Salvia farinacea is considered perennial in USDA zones 7b-11, although there are reports of it returning as cold as 4b-5a. They are reliably self-sowing, so maybe they come up from seed in cooler zones like my Salvia coccinea.
They do get a bit sprawly so I usually tied them up or staked them to get them to stand up. You can get a bit creative if you need to. 🙂
Seeds germinate in around 14 days with a soil temperature of 65-70°. Seeds should not be covered as they need light to germinate. Seeds should be started indoors if possible between 10-12 weeks before the last frost date. They are fast-growing and should flower about 4 months from sowing. Plants may not flower if you sow seed outdoors after the last frost date.
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