Thursday, February 11, 2010

Blue Sage - Eranthemum


Good morning everyone. It is a chilly 41 and with the wind chill feels like it's 35. That would seem warm to a lot of you, to us it's cold. I hope you are all staying comfy and warm.

This mornings post is about a wonderfully blue flowered shrub, called Blue Sage. I got this many, many years ago at our local flea market. It is one of my very favorite shrubs in our gardens.

I have a great book from 1969 that we bought at this same flea market in 1991. It is Florida Landscape Plants ~ Native and Exotic by John V. Watkins and Thomas J. Sheehan. It is a University of Florida book.

The following info is from this book.

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Eranthemum (er-ANN-the-mum): Greek for lovely flower

Family: Acanthaceae.

Relatives: Bears-breech and shrimp plant.

Habit of Growth: Strongly upright, open, and scraggly.

Flowers: Celestial blue, 3/4" across, in axillary and terminal spikes, above prominently nerved bracts.

Partial shade is recommended and sandy soil of moderate fertility, that drains readily, is usually satisfactory.

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We definitely have sandy soil here, and this plant survives around the property with little care. I love it and look forward to those wonderful blue flowers every winter. The plant can be rather scraggly, but you can prune it if you wish. Mine are usually scraggly.

For more information visit Top Tropicals. I see at this website that they have a purple flowering one, oh my. I've never even seen the purple around here at all.




Zone 10 ~ s.e. FL

17 comments:

Darla said...

What a nice carefree shrub!

Roses and Lilacs said...

Good morning Flower Lady. I'm a big fan of the sages in general. I haven't grown the one you are showcasing today but I've grown others in the family and found them to be tough, drought tolerant plants that produce blooms over a long period.
Marnie

Skeeter said...

I love sage even though a big scraggly :-) Calling for snow in some parts of Florida so hope you are prepared if it comes your way! Would like to see some with my own eyes rather then just on blogs but not sure I want it this late in the year with spring starting to pop for us here in GA. I think the Daffy’s could take a bit of white…

L. D. Burgus said...

I have never heard of this one before now. It is a beautiful plant.

Linda said...

What a pretty flower. I haven't heard of this one or seen it as far as I know. I like blue flowers.

Noelle said...

Well, 41 is cold for us too in the Arizona desert :^) I love the delicate shade of blue of your shrub.

gld said...

I have been wondering about that lovely blue plant.

Probably not for my Ozarks soil, but I sure think it is pretty.

NellJean said...

Eranthemum -- I'll have to check into that. Related to shrimp plant, loves sandy soil sounds as if it might grow for me. I take shrimp plants inside for the winter but they usually sprout back up in spring from the roots, outside. The white is blooming in the greenhouse now.

Anonymous said...

So pretty! I love that your garden looks like an English garden although you live in the subtropics. Wonderful music too!

Jane

Jim Groble said...

Beautiful plant. temps in the 40,s are cold even to this snowbelter. jim

Kimberly said...

This bloom is absolutely gorgeous!

tina said...

What a lovely shade of blue. I wish it would grow here!

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

a pretty blue - so hard to find.

Hope you don't get any snow out of this weather front. These southern snowstorms are the craziest.

Cameron

sweet bay said...

Celestial blue is a good description! The deep violet-blue at the center sets off the blue of the flowers even more.

healingmagichands said...

Very pretty, but I'll probably pass on planting it here. I'm surely not wanting to spend money on plants that are not hardy in this zone. . .

Hope the cold weather you are getting does not cause you a lot of damage.

Susan said...

I thought that was Blue Sage. I rooted some from my mother's yard. It came from my brother-in-law's grandmother's garden (Did you get all that?)...it gets a little complicated sometime. I have never ever seen this plant for sale anywhere and it's hard to find info. on the web, so thanks for the link. I did not know it comes in purple, too. It does not freeze --hurray!

FlowerLady said...

Good morning everyone ~ It's another chilly morning here, low 40's and with windchill feels like it's mid 30's. Brrr.

Darla ~ It is a nice carefree shrub. I have one at the back of the property that I never do anything with and it's surviving just fine, along with a hibiscus that is growing right next to it.

Marnie ~ This is definitely one tough, drought resistant plant.

Skeeter ~ Didn't you get your wish for snow? We're way down south so didn't get any.

L.D. ~ It is beautiful, and not one that many know about or grow.

Linda ~ Blue flowers are one of my favorites also.

Noelle ~ It's cold again here this morning.

Glenda ~ I think you would have to bring it indoors for the winter if you grew it there.

Nell Jean ~ This might grow in your area, but like you said you'd probably have to take in during the winter. In your greenhouse I'm sure it would survive and thrive.

Jane ~ My garden is a work in progress, here in the tropical climate that we have.

Jim ~ this is one of my favorite flowering plants.

Kimberly ~ It is beautiful that's for sure. I'm happy every year to see the blooms once again.

Tina ~ It is a striking shade of blue, a real delight to grow.

Cameron ~ You're right, it is hard finding this color of blue. No snow here, too far south.

Sweetbay ~ I liked the description of celestial blue and agree with you about the violet-blue centers setting off the blue of the flowers.

Healingmagichands ~ I know what you mean about spending $ on plants that won't survive in our zones. I've been there and done that. We've lots foliage from the cold, most things seem to be doing well.

Susan ~ Isn't it a wonderful plant? So easy and I just love the color of the flowers. I need to make some more cuttings to root and grow around the property.

Thanks again everyone for visiting and your kind comments.

FlowerLady