Yesterday’s post was about planting containers that are hummingbird magnets. Well one of my must-have plants for this purpose is Salvia ‘Black and Blue.’

Name:  Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’

Type of Plant:   A perennial in zones 8 to 10, this plant is a beautiful, blue-flowering annual for colder areas.

Why I love this: ‘Black and Blue’ salvia is a hummingbird magnet. That is reason enough to grow it, but it has other qualities that make it a must-have annual as well. This plant grows fairly quickly in containers to about two feet high. When planted in the ground it will get three feet tall in one summer and in places where it’s hardy this Salvia can grow up to five feet tall and wide.  I love this plant because it combines well with other annuals in pots and boxes.

A Word to the Wise: Clip off the old flowers over the summer to encourage repeat blooming. If you live in zone 7 you might be able to over-winter this Salvia. I kept it alive over the winter once in my warm-zone-6 garden by mounding up salt-mash hay or leaves over the plant in November. I didn’t cut it down in the fall, and this is a key to successfully keeping it alive over the winter. Don’t use a mulch that packs down and stays wet, such as leaves. Use pine needles or pine

Although this Salvia is an annual where I live, it's worth planting every year.

Although this Salvia is usually an annual where I live, it’s worth planting every year.

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