Littleleaf Sage bushes growing in the sanctuary's gardens

Littleleaf Sage is available in a wide range of colors, particularly reds and pinks.

Scientific Name: Salvia microphylla
Alternate Common Names: Baby Sage, Blackcurrant Sage, Mountain Sage, Mirto de Monte (Spanish)
Native Range: southeastern Arizona to southern Mexico
Attracts: Hummingbirds, songbirds, butterflies, native bees
Plant Type: Semi-woody perennial to evergreen shrub
Flower Colors: Red, magenta, pink, orange, pale yellow, white, purple, violet, bicolor
Bloom period: Spring-Fall
Mature Size (w x h): 4 x 3 feet (1.2 x 0.9 m)
Hardiness: 5°F/-15°C
Water: Moderate
Light: Full sun, partial sun

Most of the plants in the sanctuary’s hummingbird garden are varieties and hybrids of this ornamental sage, which comes in a rainbow of colors and a variety of leaf sizes and shapes. Some botanists consider Lemmon’s Sage (S. lemmonii), native to the mountains of southeastern Arizona and northwestern Mexico, to be a variety of this species (S. microphylla var. wislizeni). Hummingbirds, butterflies, and native bees harvest the sugar-rich nectar, and finches and other small songbirds eat the tiny black seeds.

Cultivars represented in the garden include: ‘Dancing Dolls’, ‘Flower Child’, and ‘Heatwave Glow’.