High Desert Plant Finder & Guide
Lipstick Texas Sage
Salvia greggii 'Lipstick'
Lipstick Texas Sage in bloom
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Lipstick Texas Sage flowers
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 30 inches
Spacing: 18 inches
Hardiness Zone: (annual)
Other Names: Gregg's Sage, Autumn Sage
Stunning lipstick red flowers are borne above the airy green foliage on this spring to fall blooming perennial; a heat tolerant, compact selection, perfect for mixed containers and borders; a great annual in colder climates
Lipstick Texas Sage has masses of beautiful racemes of lightly-scented ruby-red flowers with brown calyces rising above the foliage from mid spring to mid fall, which emerge from distinctive red flower buds, and which are most effective when planted in groupings. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its fragrant narrow leaves remain green in color throughout the year. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Lipstick Texas Sage is an herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and should only be pruned after flowering to avoid removing any of the current season's flowers. It is a good choice for attracting bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Lipstick Texas Sage is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- Border Edging
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Lipstick Texas Sage will grow to be about 30 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 18 inches apart. Although it's not a true annual, this plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist growing conditions, but will not tolerate any standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. Consider applying a thick mulch around the root zone in winter to protect it in exposed locations or colder microclimates. This is a selection of a native North American species. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Lipstick Texas Sage is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.
Please note: Our Plant Guide is all about plants that will work in the high desert. It is not, nor is it intended to be, a current list of plants in stock on hand at each location or at our farm. We purposely do not sell or ship plants via the internet. Plant questions and availability are best determined in-store.