Common Sage, Garden Sage 'Purpurescens'

Salvia officinalis

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Salvia (SAL-vee-uh) (Info)
Species: officinalis (oh-fiss-ih-NAH-liss) (Info)
Cultivar: Purpurescens
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24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

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:

Full Sun



Bloom Color:

Light Blue


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer




Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

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 semi-hardwood cuttings

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Seed does not store well; sow as soon as possible

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Merced, California

Rockledge, Florida

Dacula, Georgia

Clarksville, Indiana

Huntsville, Texas

Clinton, Washington

Freeland, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Nov 20, 2012, JonthanJ from Logansport, IN wrote:

Planted in my scree in 2011, this came through the extraordinarily mild winter of 2012 without even shedding its leaves. As with the Tricolor, this guy makes a nice display right into the winter as a lot of other things shut down.


On Apr 6, 2005, PurplePansies from Deal, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

A joy to behold wonderful in the flower or herb garden true purple softy velvety leaves look nice on bushy plants and remain colorful all winter.... came through the winter with flying colors.... little protection and little to no die back.... pruning is desired to maintain bushiness.... Leaves taste as good slightly weaker.... but almost as good as regular salvia officianilis..... Highly reccommended.... :)


On May 29, 2002, Baa wrote:

Purple Sage has received the RHS Award for Garden Merit.

The young leaves of this variety are purple, they go very dark green with age. Can be used and grown in exactly the same way as the Common Sage.

The plant in my garden is 2 years old and has become so heavy its split itself in 3 and I will need to take cuttings to ensure its survival.