5 Reasons to Grow Cedar Sage

Looking to add a pop of color to a shady area of your yard? Plant Cedar Sage (Salvia roemeriana)! This Texas native plant thrives in nature under the shade of Cedar (Ashe Juniper) trees on the Edwards Plateau, hence its common name Cedar Sage.

Cedar sage plant
Saliva roemeriana is topped with bright red flower spikes.

This low growing perennial is a great way to brighten your yard with red flower spikes in the spring. Saliva roemeriana grows around 1 foot tall and tends to form colonies by reseeding easily.

Looking for more shade-loving plants like Cedar Sage? Start by downloading my free printable PDF of the Top 10 Texas Shade Plants. You can take this handy one-pager with you to the plant nursery.

5 Reasons to Grow Cedar Sage

1) It thrives in partial shade

Many of us have shady spots in our yards, and it can be difficult to find plants that perform well there. Most colorful blooming plants demand full sun, but Cedar Sage plant is an exception!

It thrives in part shade, preferring a little morning sun and dappled shade throughout the day. Its bright red flowers add a major pop of crimson color to attract your eyes… and pollinators!

2) Cedar Sage is an important spring nectar source

Cedar Sage starts blooming in early spring, providing much-needed nectar to pollinators while other blooming perennials are still coming out of dormancy. Its tubular red blooms attract hummingbirds seeking nectar to fuel their spring migration.

Salvia reoemeriana

3) It is drought tolerant

As water becomes an increasingly scarce resource, it is important to plant drought tolerant native plants. The good news is Salvia roemeriana requires minimal supplemental water once established. In fact, it prefers dry, well-drained soils.

In nature, Cedar Sage is found growing in rocky limestone soil. Avoid overwatering it to keep it happy.

4) It is deer resistant

As they say, a hungry deer will eat anything, but they are more likely to avoid Cedar Sage than other plants in your garden. In general, deer tend to avoid Savlias due to their strong smell. Here is a list of other deer resistant Texas native plants if you have a lot of deer in your area.

5) You can grow it in pots

Many native plants get too big to grow as a container plant, but Cedar Sage is compact and behaves well as long as you have a pot with good drainage.

Try topping the soil with some leaf mulch of junipers to replicate its natural environment. It will bloom in spring and sporadically starting early summer.

Download the Free PDF: Texas Native Shade Plants

Have a shady yard? I created a handy one-page PDF for you to print and take along with you to the plant nursery. It includes a thumbnail photo of each plant along with both its common and scientific name, shade requirements, and other helpful growing info. Get it here:

Texas native shade plants

Common Questions about Cedar Sage (Salvia roemeriana):

What does Cedar Sage look like?

This perennial salvia grows around 1 foot tall and often forms colonies. It has attractive foliage topped with flower spikes of crimson blooms.

Where is Salvia roemeriana native to?

It can be found growing in the limestone outcrops of its native habitat in the Edwards Plateau region of Central Texas, as well as West Texas and Northern Mexico. It is typically found growing under Juniperus ashei in nature. See its native range here.

How do you care for Cedar Sage?

This hardy native plant needs little water and care once established. No pruning is necessary, although you can deadhead spent flower heads if you want to encourage more blooms.

How do you propagate Cedar Sage?

This perennial tends to reseed easily. You can propagate it by collecting seeds from the seed heads when they turn black. Scatter the seeds over the soil and ensure good seed-to-soil contact by keeping the ground clear of heavy leaf or mulch pileup. New seedings will emerge in the spring. You can also propagate it by cuttings. Dip the cut end into a rooting hormone to encourage root growth.

Is Cedar Sage evergreen?

Salvia roemeriana will die back in winter months, although I have noticed its basal leaves often stay evergreen throughout the winter here in San Antonio.

Cedar Sage evergreen
The basal rosette of a Cedar Sage plant in February before its flower spikes develop.

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