'Marcus' is a dwarf, perennial salvia with compact spikes of deep-violet flowers that are produced above bushy clumps of attractive gray-green foliage in the late spring and early summer. When blooming, the clumps remain compact, reaching 10-12 inches tall. Extending bloom times can be achieved by removing the flower spikes after they fade. The open flowers effectively attract hummingbirds, butterflies and bees into the landscape. This cultivar was discovered growing as a naturally occurring mutation of S. nemerosa 'Osfriesland' in Germany in 1998. Erect, deep violet flower spikes appear in a lengthy summer bloom. Lance-shaped, green leaves (to 3" long).
PLANT USES: This dwarf meadow sage is well suited for container gardening, perennial borders fronts, rock gardens and in other small spaces in the landscape. Also effective as an edging plant. Avoid crown and root rot by refraining from excessively moist or wet conditions.
Size: #1 · Hardiness: Zones 4-8
Common: Meadow Sage · Exposure: Full Sun
Botanical: Salvia nemorosa 'Marcus'
Height: 10-12" · Spacing: 12-18"
Bloomtime: June-September · Foliage: Medium Green Leaves
Flower: Deep violet
Pests: No serious insect or disease problems. Salvias are generally susceptible to powdery mildew, leaf spot and rust. White fly and scale are occasional insect pests.
Notes: Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun. Tolerates drought. Prefers moist, gravelly or sandy soils with good drainage. Plants may repeat bloom throughout the summer, but need regular moisture to encourage this. Remove spent flower spikes to help extend the bloom period. If plant foliage depreciates in hot summer conditions to the point where it looks unsightly, consider trimming back. In any event, cut plants back after flowering has concluded. This plant will not self-seed.
Planting instructions: May be planted in any well-drained soil. Dig a hole large enough to encompass the roots without bending or circling. Set the plant in place so the crown (part of the plant where the root meets the stem) is about 1-2 inches below the soil surface. Cover with soil to the original soil surface and water thoroughly.