Salvia Species, Autumn Sage, Cherry Sage, Gregg Salvia

Salvia greggii

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Salvia (SAL-vee-uh) (Info)
Species: greggii (GREG-ee-eye) (Info)
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Tropicals and Tender Perennials


12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


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)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Bloom Color:




White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

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:

By dividing the rootball

From softwood cuttings

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Foliage Color:


Medium Green

Bloom Characteristics:

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

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Auburn, Alabama

Chandler, Arizona

Green Valley, Arizona

Hereford, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona

Sahuarita, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona(2 reports)

Yuma, Arizona

Alamo, California

Canoga Park, California

Castro Valley, California

China Lake Acres, California

Glen Avon, California

Los Angeles, California

Palm Springs, California

Pedley, California

Redding, California

Reedley, California

Ridgecrest, California

Rohnert Park, California

Roseville, California

Rubidoux, California

Sacramento, California

San Anselmo, California

Santa Ana, California

Sunnyslope, California

Wilmington, Delaware

Hollywood, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida

Largo, Florida

Lutz, Florida

Ocala, Florida

Pensacola, Florida

Quincy, Florida

Tallahassee, Florida

Trenton, Florida

Augusta, Georgia

Douglas, Georgia

Hinesville, Georgia

Lawrenceville, Georgia

Suwanee, Georgia

Derby, Kansas

Independence, Kansas

Ewing, Kentucky

Hebron, Kentucky

Coushatta, Louisiana

Lafayette, Louisiana

Monroe, Louisiana

Scott, Louisiana

Zachary, Louisiana

Baltimore, Maryland

Ellicott City, Maryland

Southfield, Michigan

Ocean Springs, Mississippi

Henderson, Nevada

Las Vegas, Nevada(2 reports)

Albuquerque, New Mexico(2 reports)

Farmington, New Mexico

Las Cruces, New Mexico

Roswell, New Mexico

Durham, North Carolina

Holly Springs, North Carolina

Oak Island, North Carolina

Raleigh, North Carolina

Enid, Oklahoma

Harrah, Oklahoma

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Grants Pass, Oregon

Ladys Island, South Carolina

Rockwood, Tennessee

Abilene, Texas(2 reports)

Alice, Texas(2 reports)

Arlington, Texas

Austin, Texas(8 reports)

Belton, Texas

Brady, Texas

Brownsville, Texas

Bulverde, Texas

Camp Wood, Texas

Carrollton, Texas

Conroe, Texas

Copperas Cove, Texas

Crawford, Texas

Dallas, Texas(3 reports)

Dripping Springs, Texas

Edinburg, Texas

El Paso, Texas(2 reports)

Elgin, Texas

Fate, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas(3 reports)

Georgetown, Texas

Haltom City, Texas

Helotes, Texas

Houston, Texas

Irving, Texas

Kyle, Texas

Leander, Texas

Lewisville, Texas

Lincoln, Texas

Mc Kinney, Texas

Odessa, Texas

Plano, Texas

Red Oak, Texas

Rowlett, Texas

San Antonio, Texas(2 reports)

Sanger, Texas

Southlake, Texas

Sugar Land, Texas

Temple, Texas

Von Ormy, Texas

Weatherford, Texas

Ogden, Utah

Arlington, Virginia

Kalama, Washington

Seattle, Washington

Vancouver, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 8, 2021, botfeeder from Vancouver, WA wrote:

This seems to be a file for the salvia greggii without being identified by a specific name.

There are a lot of different salvia greggiis out there. For example, the one I've been planting lately is named "lipstick".

But as to the salvia greggiis in general, I think they are the best salvias. They tend to be beautiful, grow well, and are cold hardy. I'm in zone 8 so you wouldn't think cold hardiness would be very much of an issue, but there are some salvias that I believe are listed zone 8 that died in my garden during an unusually cold winter. But anything with "greggii" in its name I feel pretty confident will hold up just fine here. If you're in zone 5-7 then that's all the more reason the greggii is a better choice of a salvia than one that is not ra... read more


On Nov 29, 2013, MurrayTX from El Paso, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

I have recently planted three of these in my bee garden, but can attest (by observing the neighbor's) that they do very well in alkaline sandy soil if they are given some protection from the intense late afternoon desert sun of El Paso (altitude 3.7k ft).


On Jul 17, 2013, NJReed from Southfield, MI wrote:

I bought this plant from Romence in Grand Rapids (when it had been zoned to 5). It came through its first Michigan winter and is just wonderful this summer. Blooms are a bright, hot pick & hummers love it! I did not cut back until the spring, it was surrounded by a bed of chopped leaves, and new growth came from the old wood.


On May 24, 2013, Dean48089 from Warren, MI (Zone 6b) wrote:

I used to have three or four different cultivars of Salvia greggii growing in my Zone 6B garden (all purchased from High Country Gardens). They were in two different raised beds: one on the east side of the house were it hardly ever got any rain, and the other on the west side of the house made up of mostly chicken grit and pea gravel. The plants survived the winters of 98/99 through 2001/2002, which were very mild winters in my area, without any sort of protection. Had I gone out and put rose cones on them the following winters they would probably still be alive today.


On Oct 23, 2012, tomaras3 from Harrah, OK wrote:

Magnets for butterflies and hummingbirds!


On Sep 9, 2012, mlsmls from Belleville, IL wrote:

I live in the St. Louis, MO region (6a) and have owned this plant for many years. When I moved 6 years ago I moved a plant that had already lived in my former back yard for at least 3 years. I have a newer plant in an area which gets all day sun but is not protected from northern winds in the winter. It has come back 2 years now. Never watered during our 12 days of over 100 degree temps and no rain; it still lives. Very long blooming. Attracts hummingbirds (red variety that is) and butterflies. Doesn't seem to be fussy about soil quality.


On Apr 1, 2012, Sandwichkatexan from Copperas Cove, TX wrote:

Self sows freely here . Hummingbirds love them . I have about every color out there and a few that I have pollinated myself to create new color variations . a fun plant that deer avoid . and always has a hummingbird or butterfly visiting .


On Nov 10, 2011, mcvirginia from Arlington, VA wrote:

Salvia greggii looks like it dies back to "sticks" in the Arlington, VA winter, but it really acts like a deciduous perennial. It has come back strongly for three years. Requires some cutting back before it leafs out.


On Mar 21, 2011, astilbe2 from Monroe, LA wrote:

I planted a small autumn sage last spring, and it has performed beautifully . It bloomed throughout the summer of 2010, even surviving our week long heat wave of 103degree days scorching everything else. I love this plant. Now to my surprise, it has already started another beautiful bloom surge, even in early March!


On Feb 20, 2011, annlof from Camarillo, CA wrote:

Salvia greggii is pretty foolproof in Southern California. I cut my plants back by about 30 percent in December (our rainy season) to keep them compact. Nevertheless, they tend to get woody and unproductive after a few years and are best replaced. Cuttings root easily and plants grow quickly.


On Sep 22, 2010, xeriman from Farmington, NM wrote:

Cherry sage has been surviving pretty well under xeric conditions (about 3 to 5 gallons of water per week) here in northwestern New Mexico (USDA zone 6B; Sunset zone 3A) at an elevation above 5000' but it dies back to ground in most winters. Consequently, I've not seen plants reach the 3 to 4 feet height reported from more southern climes. It is used extensively in local urban landscapes here.


On May 9, 2010, jazzy1okc from Oklahoma City, OK wrote:

Here in OKC this plant seems to be doing extremely well in my garden and in the gardens of others. I have three, two in full sun on the south side of my house and one on the north side in afternoon only sun. The one on the north side suffered damage from our unusually harsh winter and an enthusiastic large dog, but it is coming back slowly. All have excellent drainage.
It is difficult to raise many plants in western exposures in OKC because the heat and dry southerly winds in midsummer are so intense. However, the various sages, many prairie types of plants (cone flower, coreopsis, Black Eyed Susans, etc.), several types of ornamental grasses, yaupon holly, yucca, and sedum do fine. Some varieties of Mediterranean plants--oregano, rosemary, and lavender--can be grown here but a... read more


On Feb 21, 2010, tulpen from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

A favorite for all the reasons already stated. Question: should I fertile/ add some cow manure to soil to enhance more flowers??? Usually when plants flower a lot they also require "food." Thanks! Susan


On May 20, 2009, mcrousse from Holly Springs, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I LOVE this plant! So do the hummers! One of the specimens is growing on an exposed slope on the northwest side of my house in somewhat amended clay. It grows in well-drained clay! It has become a shrub, probably around 4 ft square. It starts flowering in early April and doesn't quit till frost. Doesn't blink at our heat and humidity and gets full sun all day.


On Jul 18, 2008, slrob from Fort Worth, TX wrote:

'Flame' cultivar performed so well in my western garden that I purchased the 'rose pink' cultivar for my eastern garden to replace a nuisance 'black-and-blue sage'. 'flame' has handled a late frost, a severe hail storm and the Texas heat amazingly. 'flame' is more like a hot-pink (purplish base tint) color while the 'rose pink' appears to have more of a salmon pink color to me. Both are beautiful with many flowers on the 2-3' stalks. 'flame' lost a few leaves during winter but bushed out quickly in spring heat. Both are used as short hedges against the house in my gardens. Hummingbirds like these too!


On Mar 13, 2007, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

This was one of the loveliest sages in our garden last summer, and it never noticed it was flowering in awful heat & humidity - just bloomed and bloomed in partial shade for the amusement of hummingbirds till frost.

I recently received a pack of mixed Salvia greggii seeds from the North American Rock Garden Society

1) Sow at 70*F with seeds wrapped in barely moist coffee filter inside baggy. Germination occurred in 10 - 20 days.

2) Regarding the Salvia genus in general, DG Annette68 said, "It is very true about surface sowing salvia seeds, they need light to germinate, they have to be surface sown."


On Nov 17, 2006, Marilynbeth from Hebron, KY wrote:

I love Salvia greggii's! They bloom early and long in the season. They are different varieties and colors to pick from the list of greggii's.


On May 22, 2006, whiskgar from Baltimore, MD wrote:

I found "Hot Lips" and "Maraschino" autumn sage last year at our local arboretum's plant sale. It does NOT need full sun in this hot, very humid climate. I planted them under a dogwood so that they got afternoon filtered sunlight and they went to town & bloomed vigorously all summer on 36-inch gracefully arching stems. Unfortunately, the nurseries around here don't know this plant. I'm trying to spread the word.


On Jun 28, 2005, Rocco from Tulsa, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

I have a salvia greggii that is about three years old growing in Tulsa,OK. It has been blooming since earlier this year and will bloom until fall. I took cuttings this past spring. I placed them in styrofoam cups with potting soil. They are now about twelve inches tall and ready to be transplanted. The plant is easily propagated from cuttings.


On Jun 28, 2005, Kelli from L.A. (Canoga Park), CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

Blooms year-round. Produces seed but I have never had it self-sow. A friend of mine in Tucson says his self-sow all of the time. I think the difference is in our watering practices. He waters briefly every day and I water for a long time once a week or every other week.


On Mar 14, 2005, hanna1 from Castro Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Mine is named 'Red', I albsolutely love the color, it is intense!


On May 28, 2004, cghoover8 from Albuquerque, NM wrote:

Evergreen at 5500' in New Mexico - very popular here in Albuquerque.


On May 27, 2004, angelap from Weatherford, TX (Zone 7b) wrote:

Here in the harsh west Texas environment, Salvia greggi is a garden blessing! I have red, white and pink in the garden, and they bloom all summer, even in the excruciating heat. Mine reseed freely.


On May 12, 2004, kns1313 from Tijeras, NM wrote:

Tough to grow at 7000' in New Mexico (10" average annual rainfall). Dies back to the ground every winter, 50% of new plantings die every year. Beautiful plant, hummingbirds love it, but the mountains are tough on it. Mine have never set seed, I readily propagate via softwood cuttings. Still looking for altitude-adapted cultivar.


On May 4, 2004, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

I totally agree with all the good reports on this plant and I find it extremely easy to propagate. The hummingbirds and butterflies are crazy about the flowers and bring us a lot of joy.
Salvia gregii is Endemic to Texas.


On May 3, 2004, AngelinaB from Voca, TX wrote:

If you love to watch hummingbirds and butterflies, this is an excellent plant. And this Salvia propogates quite easily. I've given 'babies' to family members and friends.


On Oct 9, 2003, jnurlv1 from Jacksonville, FL wrote:

I had no knowledge of the plant name or habitat when I obtained it. Therefore, I planted it in a half sun location since Florida sun is more excruciating to plants than other areas. It proved successful, and has gone from a small 6 inch twig to just shy of 5ft tall by 3 1/2 ft wide beauty. I have it in rich black soil that's heavily mulched. I have easily propagated it by snapping branches and replanting them in like soil and keeping them in shady areas for a couple of weeks. I found the name from a neighborhood nursery that had some in the red (mine is pink) and from there have added the reds to my garden. I love it and nicknamed it my fairy bush.


On Aug 15, 2003, sailinshoes from Independence, KS wrote:

Plant is also perennial in zone 5.


On Aug 14, 2003, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

San Antonio, TX
For hot, dry, sunny areas, it is one of the toughest, most beautiful performers. It blooms from March till frost with the most prolific blooming in spring and fall. Cut it back by half twice a year (mid February and mid June) to keep it low growing and dense. It is one of the most frequently planted native Texas plants. Preferring full sun, it does not bloom as well in partial or filtered shade and becomes leggy. Light green leaves indicate a need for fertilizer. Hummingbirds love this plant. Pull off a bloom and suck the nectar and you will see why they do!


On May 26, 2003, Lavanda from Mcallen, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

In February when I had cabin fever, I saw a beautiful specimen in full bloom at a garden center. To the side were some non-blooming identical plants, so I bought two non-blooming ones instead of one blooming plant..I set them out immediately and within one week both were blooming. They are very happily blooming away and have only been watered by occasional rain showers. The hummingbirds love this plant, the redder the flowers, the better. It is very enjoyable to walk by and see the cheerful tubular blooms.