Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Mealy Cup Sage, Mealycup Sage
Salvia farinacea

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Salvia (SAL-vee-uh) (Info)
Species: farinacea (far-ih-NAH-kee-uh) (Info)

» View all varieties of Salvias

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

20 members have or want this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

9-12 in. (22-30 cm)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade


Bloom Color:
Medium Blue
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Spring
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
This plant is resistant to deer

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Click thumbnail
to view:

By htop
Thumbnail #1 of Salvia farinacea by htop

By Verdesign
Thumbnail #2 of Salvia farinacea by Verdesign

By Kaufmann
Thumbnail #3 of Salvia farinacea by Kaufmann

By dave
Thumbnail #4 of Salvia farinacea by dave

By ladyannne
Thumbnail #5 of Salvia farinacea by ladyannne

By mgarr
Thumbnail #6 of Salvia farinacea by mgarr

By frostweed
Thumbnail #7 of Salvia farinacea by frostweed

There are a total of 22 photos.
Click here to view them all!


7 positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive TXgreenjean On Oct 16, 2010, TXgreenjean from Bedford, TX wrote:

This Texas Wildflower blooms early spring until the hot summer, then springs back with an abundance of blue blooms in fall. Cut it back after the first bloom for compact growth. Mine has morning shade, hot afternoon sun and performs beautifully. Drought hardy fool proof plant requiring little water.

Positive themikeman On Aug 23, 2010, themikeman from Concord, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

More of a purple color close up, but bluish from far back, not as tall as other blue colored salvias, the intense sun here in NC doesn't seem to bother it, so it seems very hardy, but then again it doesnt start blooming for me till much later than all my other blue salvias such as may night, victoria blue, etc, which bloom earlier; starts blooming around the same time as my black and blue salvias, maybe alittle latter, but these black and blues salvia are not mealy cups like these so different leaf and much they are much taller, so this is an early fall one for me. Also, since this doesnt get real tall i'd use it as a border plant like the previous commenter stated. peace. mike

Positive ElSapo On Feb 23, 2010, ElSapo from San Antonio, TX wrote:

I first came to admire this plant when I saw it in a lot that was being plowed up. Went out & dug up a wheel barrow full & planted it around the garden, mainly as a border plant. With some organic fertilizer & root stimulator it took readily & has become one of my favorite xeric plants!! Excellent drought resistance & beautiful blooms.

Neutral sallyg On Jan 30, 2010, sallyg from Anne Arundel,, MD (Zone 7b) wrote:

This is perennial for me, gradually becoming bigger but does not seem to do well with transplanting. THe roots are woody and hard to divide. Prone to downy mildew on lower leaves. Goldfins\ches ove the seeds so I don't shear them as I should to encourage rebloom and fullr growth from below. Pinching in spring may help fullness.
Will self sow but not excessively.

Positive htop On Apr 22, 2007, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

This plant can be found growing natively in Connecticutt,, Florida, Louisiana, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Texas. It does best in full sun; however, the drier it is, the more shade the plant can handle. When new basal foliage appears, cut the old flower stems to keep the plants lush. Also, shearing the plant 2 or 3 times a growing season keeps it full and encorages flowering. After the first frost browns the leaves or in mid-winter, prune to 3" from the ground. Butterflies and hummingbirds love the nectar and deer avoid the plant. If the soil is kept too wet, it will become leggy and weak. A cold, moist stratification period is required for germination. This salvia species requires light in order to germinate. It can be propagated by cuttings.

Positive bilby1915 On Feb 28, 2006, bilby1915 from like californian climate
Australia wrote:

I grow this in full sun and live in a californian type climate (no rain in summer but i use a watering system). Has any one else experienced brittle woody bits of the plant, lowest down? By deadheading it, i have gotten it to flower from mid spring to autumn and it hasn't finished yet.

I was worried i would lose the plant when the heatwaves struck (four days in a row of 40+ degrees celcius - but it hung in there.

My garden is on a slope, so the plant definately gets well drained.

Positive DayBreak On Jul 30, 2003, DayBreak from Springfield, MO wrote:

This plant readily self-sows, but usually also survives southwest Missouri winters (in my garden at least). Goldfinches relish the seeds. Their bright yellow plumage contrasted against the blue blossoms is a very beautiful sight!

Neutral loisbeth On May 3, 2002, loisbeth wrote:

6-8" upright spikes of china blue flowers above compact bushy plant. Unreliable perennial except for in well drained sites. Grown normally as an annual in Texas.

Positive Terry On Mar 7, 2001, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Tender perennial grown as an annual in colder climates. One of the showiest salvias for full sun locations; foliage is gray-green topped with vivid blue spikes of flowers most of the summer and fall. Flowers somewhat resemble lavender, and work well in cottage garden borders. Flowers will be more vivid in areas with cooler summers.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Auburn, Alabama
Pine Level, Alabama
Phoenix, Arizona
Cabot, Arkansas
Auburn, California
Jacumba, California
Menifee, California
Merced, California
Rancho Mirage, California
Stockton, California
Arvada, Colorado
Deland, Florida
Inverness, Florida
Jacksonville, Florida
Merritt Island, Florida
Saint Petersburg, Florida (2 reports)
Sanford, Florida
Winter Springs, Florida
Braselton, Georgia
Barbourville, Kentucky
Hebron, Kentucky
Minden, Louisiana
New Orleans, Louisiana
Zachary, Louisiana
Crofton, Maryland
Florence, Mississippi
Springfield, Missouri
Roswell, New Mexico
Concord, North Carolina
Owasso, Oklahoma
Columbia, South Carolina
Moncks Corner, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Lawrenceburg, Tennessee
Lebanon, Tennessee
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Arlington, Texas
Austin, Texas (4 reports)
Bedford, Texas
Belton, Texas
Bulverde, Texas
Fort Worth, Texas
Irving, Texas
Kerrville, Texas
Lipan, Texas
Lubbock, Texas
Mc Kinney, Texas
San Antonio, Texas (3 reports)
Santo, Texas
Richmond, Virginia
Kinnear, Wyoming
Riverton, Wyoming

We recommend Firefox
Overwhelmed? There's a lot to see here. Try starting at our homepage.

[ Home | About | Advertise | Media Kit | Mission | Featured Companies | Submit an Article | Terms of Use | Tour | Rules | Privacy Policy | Contact Us ]

Back to the top

Copyright © 2000-2015 Dave's Garden, an Internet Brands company. All Rights Reserved.

Hope for America