Simply Trees

Russian Sage

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Twice a monthFull sunDeer resistantSummer to fall
  • Long Blooming Season: Russian Sage offers a lengthy bloom period from mid-summer to fall, providing a persistent splash of color in the garden.
  • Attracts Pollinators: Its lavender-blue flowers are not only visually appealing but also attract a host of pollinators, enriching the garden ecosystem.
  • Drought and Heat Tolerant: Exceptionally hardy, Russian Sage is well-suited for dry and hot conditions, making it a perfect fit for xeriscapes and water-wise gardens.

More Details

Russian Sage, scientifically known as Perovskia atriplicifolia, is a striking perennial that brings a touch of whimsical charm to any garden. Known for its airy spires of lavender-blue flowers and silvery-green foliage, this plant is a magnet for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Russian Sage thrives in a variety of climates, tolerating both drought and cold, and its prolonged blooming from mid-summer to fall makes it a delightful addition for gardeners aiming to create a serene and captivating outdoor space.

Growth rate: Fast growth rate; mature height of 3-5 feet and width of 2-4 feet.

Please note: Images on our website depict plants and trees at full maturity to showcase their expected grown characteristics. These images are illustrative examples only and do not represent the size of plants or trees upon delivery.

Pruning: Cut back the plant by about a third in early spring to promote fuller growth and remove any dead wood.

Fertilization: Fertilize in the spring with a balanced fertilizer and again in the summer with a high-phosphorus fertilizer to promote blooming.

Winter Protection: In colder zones, add a layer of mulch to protect the roots during the winter months.

Russian Sage, scientifically known as Perovskia atriplicifolia, is a low-maintenance plant that prefers well-drained soil and full sun. When planting in a pot, make sure it has drainage holes to prevent root rot, and use a well-draining potting mix. When planting in the ground, amend the soil with compost or sand to improve drainage. Plant in spring or fall, and make sure to space the plants 2-3 feet apart to allow for proper air circulation. Water the plant deeply after planting, and then water it regularly until it becomes established.

Russian Sage, scientifically known as Perovskia atriplicifolia, prefers full sun to partial shade and well-draining soil. It is drought tolerant and should be watered deeply once a week in the absence of rain during the growing season. Overwatering can cause root rot and other diseases, so it is important not to water excessively.

We process and ship your order as quickly as possible, typically within 1-3 business days. You will receive a shipping confirmation with tracking information once your item(s) ship.

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!

In cases of extreme cold or hot weather, we may temporarily delay shipping to ensure the well-being of your plants. Our primary focus is on delivering healthy and thriving plants to you. Rest assured, we'll make every effort to notify you of any delays promptly.

Please allow additional ship times during inclement weather and sale periods. We do not process or ship orders on the weekend or U.S. Holidays. Simply Trees is not responsible for delays due to carriers, local disruptions, or weather.

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At Simply Trees, we're committed to your satisfaction. If your plants arrive considerably damaged or sustained damage beyond the point of recovery, please contact us within five days at with clear photos for assistance. Our 30-day guarantee covers issues after planting, subject to our terms and conditions. We can't cover plants in the wrong climate or with inadequate care, but we're here to help in other situations. For a detailed understanding of our 30-day guarantee and how we ensure a fair process, click here to learn more.


Zones 4-9

Russian Sage is adaptable and hardy in USDA Zones 4-9, making it a versatile plant for various garden settings. It thrives in these zones due to its ability to withstand both cold winters and hot summers. Preferring well-drained soils, it's an excellent choice for gardeners looking to add a low-maintenance, yet striking, element to their landscapes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Russian Sage prefers full sun. It thrives in locations where it can receive at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily. Full sun exposure is crucial for the plant to develop its best flower production and maintain a sturdy, upright growth habit. Russian Sage does not do well in shade, where it may become leggy and produce fewer flowers.

Russian Sage is not typically considered an invasive plant. It is known for its ability to spread and establish itself in a garden setting, but it does not generally display the aggressive, ecosystem-disrupting characteristics often associated with invasive species. However, Russian Sage can self-seed and spread within a garden or landscape, which some gardeners might find a bit aggressive. Its spreading nature can be managed with regular maintenance, such as pruning and removing spent flowers to prevent excessive self-seeding. As with any plant, it's always good practice to check local guidelines and recommendations, as the behavior of plant species can vary in different environments and ecosystems.

Yes, you can cut back Russian Sage in the fall, but many gardeners choose to wait until late winter or early spring. Here are the considerations:

Fall Pruning: If you prefer to tidy up your garden in the fall, you can cut back Russian Sage to about 6 to 8 inches above the ground after the plant has finished blooming and the leaves have faded.

Late Winter/Spring Pruning: Alternatively, many gardeners wait until late winter or early spring to prune. This approach offers a few benefits:
The plant's stems can provide visual interest in the winter landscape.
The stems and foliage can help provide some insulation and protection for the plant's crown during cold weather.

Pruning Technique: When pruning, use clean, sharp shears and make your cuts just above a set of leaves or buds.

Regardless of when you choose to prune, cutting back Russian Sage annually helps to maintain a tidy appearance, encourages healthy growth, and can enhance blooming in the next season.

Choosing between planting lavender and Russian Sage depends on your specific garden needs and preferences, as both have unique characteristics:

Growing Conditions:
Both lavender and Russian Sage thrive in full sun and well-draining soil.
Russian Sage is more tolerant of poor soil conditions and can handle a bit more drought.

Size and Growth Habit:
Lavender tends to be smaller and more compact, suitable for borders and small garden spaces.
Russian Sage is larger and has a more open, airy growth habit, making it suitable for background plantings or larger spaces.

Flower Appearance:
Lavender has iconic purple blooms known for their fragrance and is often used in aromatherapy and culinary applications.
Russian Sage has a more subtle fragrance and features tall spikes of small, bluish-lavender flowers.

Lavender requires regular pruning to maintain shape and encourage new growth.
Russian Sage is lower maintenance, requiring less frequent pruning.

Climate Considerations:
Lavender prefers a Mediterranean climate, while Russian Sage can tolerate colder conditions.

Personal Preference:
Consider the aesthetic you prefer and how the plant's size, color, and fragrance fit into your garden design.

Both lavender and Russian Sage can provide beautiful, fragrant, and drought-tolerant options for a garden, but the best choice will depend on your specific garden environment, aesthetic preferences, and functional needs.

Yes, hummingbirds are attracted to Russian Sage. The plant's tall spikes of lavender-blue flowers, which bloom from mid-summer to fall, provide an excellent nectar source for hummingbirds. In addition to hummingbirds, Russian Sage is also attractive to butterflies and bees, making it a great choice for a wildlife-friendly garden. Its long blooming period and vibrant flowers make it a beneficial and visually appealing addition to any garden that aims to attract pollinators.

The best place to plant Russian Sage is in a location that meets the following criteria:

Sunlight: Plant in an area that receives full sun. Russian Sage needs at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily for optimal growth and blooming.

Soil: Choose a site with well-draining soil. Russian Sage is tolerant of poor soil conditions but does not do well in wet, waterlogged soils.

Space: Give the plant enough room to grow. Russian Sage can reach 3 to 5 feet in height and 2 to 4 feet in width. It should be spaced accordingly to allow for air circulation and to prevent overcrowding.

Garden Design: Consider planting Russian Sage in borders, as a backdrop for other perennials, in a pollinator garden, or in a xeriscape design due to its drought tolerance.

Protection from Wind: While it is relatively sturdy, in extremely windy areas, it may benefit from some protection to prevent breakage of its long stems.

By planting Russian Sage in a suitable location with full sun, well-draining soil, and enough space, you'll provide an ideal environment for this attractive and hardy perennial to thrive.

Yes, Russian Sage is a perennial plant, meaning it comes back every year. It dies back to the ground in winter in colder climates, but its roots remain alive and the plant will regrow from its base each spring. This hardy perennial is known for its ability to withstand cold winters and return reliably year after year, making it a popular choice in many gardens for its durability and long-lasting beauty.

If your Russian Sage is flopping over, there are several possible reasons:

Insufficient Sunlight: Russian Sage requires full sun to maintain a strong, upright growth habit. If it's planted in too much shade, the stems can become weak and leggy, causing them to flop over.

Overwatering or Poor Drainage: Overwatering or planting in soil with poor drainage can lead to weak, spindly growth. Russian Sage prefers well-draining soil and doesn't require a lot of water once established.

Lack of Pruning: Without annual pruning, Russian Sage can become too tall and top-heavy, leading to flopping. It's best to prune it back in late winter or early spring to encourage sturdy, new growth.

Fertilization: Over-fertilization, especially with nitrogen-heavy fertilizers, can cause rapid, weak growth that is more prone to flopping.

Mature Plant Size: Older, larger plants may have more tendency to flop, particularly if they haven't been regularly pruned to manage growth.

To prevent flopping, ensure your Russian Sage is planted in full sun, avoid overwatering, improve soil drainage if necessary, prune annually, and be cautious with fertilization. This will help promote stronger, more upright growth.

If your Russian Sage is not blooming, there could be a few reasons:

Insufficient Sunlight: Russian Sage needs full sun (at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily) to bloom well. If it's in too much shade, its blooming can be significantly reduced.

Improper Pruning: If the plant is pruned at the wrong time, it can affect flowering. Pruning should be done in late winter or early spring. Pruning after bud development in spring can remove the flower buds.

Age of the Plant: Young plants or newly planted Russian Sage may not bloom in their first year as they are establishing their root systems.

Soil Fertility: Overly rich or heavily fertilized soil can lead to lush foliage growth at the expense of flowers. Russian Sage generally does not require a lot of fertilization.

Water Stress: While Russian Sage is drought-tolerant, prolonged dry periods, especially in newly planted or young plants, can affect blooming. Similarly, too much water or poor drainage can stress the plant and impact flowering.

Environmental Factors: Unusual weather patterns, such as a late frost, can damage the developing flower buds and affect blooming.

To encourage blooming, ensure your Russian Sage is planted in a full sun location, avoid over-fertilizing, water appropriately, and prune at the correct time of year. With the right conditions, Russian Sage should produce its characteristic vibrant blooms.

Russian Sage is known for its relatively fast growth rate. Under optimal conditions, it can reach its mature size of about 3 to 5 feet tall and 2 to 4 feet wide within a few growing seasons, typically 2 to 3 years. The speed of growth can vary depending on factors such as local climate, soil quality, water availability, and care practices. With adequate sunlight, proper watering, and suitable soil conditions, Russian Sage can establish and grow quickly, adding its distinctive lavender-blue flowers and aromatic foliage to the landscape within a short time.

Our Process

We have perfected packaging and shipping plants & trees! That is why we DO NOT use any third-party fulfillment like most other online retailers. Your trees go straight from our farm to your door, safely packaged by our team of seasoned professionals. Our process ensures your plants leave our facility and arrive to your door in the best condition possible!