In Our Garden: Salvias

I’m calling “uncle!” on the Salvias. Once again my problem is not finding good enough pictures online to compare to the plants in my yard. I’m also not entirely sure I’m seeing a difference between some plants. Confusion reigns. Luckily the landscaper will be coming by sometime and I can narrow some of this down.

That said, I’m sort of sure (notice the waffling…) that this is Salvia sonomensis, Creeping Sage. The invoice calls it Fremonts Carpet, but when I Google that I get sonomensis, so I think they are the same thing. It’s a very low-growing plant with little dark leaves.

Salvia sonomensis, Creeping Sage
Salvia sonomensis, Creeping Sage

I’ll take a chance and show this one as Salvia leucophylla, aka Pt. Sal. There are five like this, as the invoice shows.

Salvia leucophylla, Pt. Sal
Salvia leucophylla, Pt. Sal

Which leaves this one as Salvia cleavlandii, Allen Chickering. There are 12 of these, again matching the invoice.

Salvia cleavlandii, Allen Chickering
Salvia cleavlandii, Allen Chickering

Seriously, can you see a difference in those photos? I can’t, but I do think the plants look different. The Pt, Sal has thicker, bigger leaves than Allen Chickering, but it’s really hard to see in photographs. Anyway, the important thing is that all these sages will bring in lots of bees, butterflies, and birds. None of them are considered edible, at least not officially. If any of you have used wild sages in your cooking, I’d love to hear about it.

2 thoughts on “In Our Garden: Salvias”

  1. I used to think I had Russian sages (or so I was told) but after looking at countless pictures I think it might be a white sage. Mine are tall, but they’ve been there several years.

    I’ve never used them for cooking, but I’ve heard you can. The flavor is probably not as robust as that of a ‘food’ sage.

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