Salvia, Blue Anise Sage, Brazilian Sage 'Costa Rica Blue'

Salvia coerulea

Family: Lamiaceae (lay-mee-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Salvia (SAL-vee-uh) (Info)
Species: coerulea (ko-er-OO-lee-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Costa Rica Blue
Synonym:Salvia guaranitica
» View all varieties of Salvias



Tropicals and Tender Perennials


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


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

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:

Medium Blue


Bloom Time:

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:

From woody stem cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us

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:

Can be grown as an annual


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

La Jolla, California

San Jose, California

San Leandro, California

Gulfport, Mississippi

Mount Laurel, New Jersey

Canyon Lake, Texas

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 23, 2010, TropicalPatty from Canyon Lake, TX wrote:

I have grown this plant for three years now. It is a stunning salvia with brilliant Blue/Black flowers. The hummingbirds love it. I have a tropical landscape. The height of the plant (6ft-8ft) blends into my tropical setting in the Texas Hill Country. The Costa Rica Blue is planted in filtered shade and well drained soil. It does not require much attention. This year we had a very harsh winter for our area. Temperatures dropped into the 20's. I was concerned that I had lost all of the plants however, today I noticed new growth coming up. It is a difficult plant to find so if you want to continue to grow yours, I suggest you propagate or gather the seeds for sowing.


On Mar 17, 2010, BajaBlue from Rancho Santa Rita, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Origin: Costa Rica


On Oct 14, 2009, zak1962 from Pittsburgh, PA wrote:

Picked this up at a local nursery last year. I asked the associate if it was 'Black & Blue' salvia, to which she responded yes. As it turned out, the plant grew and grew and then grew some more. I thought it would never flower and then lo and behold it sprang into flower in mid-September after reaching 6 ft tall.
I decided to try my luck at some cuttings last fall and this was one of the plants that took. This years plant reached well over 7 ft. tall and is still in flower (see pic at right) in mid-October despite low temps in the mid-30's last night. Unfortunately it has a lot of blooms that will probably get hit by frost this week.


On May 18, 2009, littlebiloxi from Gulfport, MS wrote:

This salvia is perennial and easy to grow here on the Ms Gulf coast.It is a hummingbird magnet. It grows in part shade or full sun in well drained soil. If the PH is low(4.5 here) salvia benefits from lime in the form of bone meal or ground,dried shrimp and crab shells. The ground shrimp and crab shells also provide nitrogen and trace minerals. I have not had any problems with disease or insect pests.
the only minor problem is that the flowers are not a good cut flower as the blooms fall off. It is easily propagated by cuttings or divisions


On Oct 17, 2007, wind from Mount Laurel, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

I have grown this for many years now. It has come back as a perennial for the past few years. It is in a very sunny southern exposure close to our house. I have found that it does not bloom all summer but blooms at the end of the summer at the same time as pineapple sage.


On Jan 10, 2005, salvia_lover from Modi'in,
Israel wrote:

This is a gorgeous plant and the Sunbirds here love love love it! I've read that hummers go crazy for it too. It needs well draining soil and does not tolerate boggy conditions. It can handle temps down to the mid 20sF although it does prefer warmer temps. It can handle the winter rains so long as the soil it is in doesn't get waterlogged. My plant gets full morning sun and shade from noon onwards and it's thriving. I highly recommend this cultivar! :-)