General Characteristics: This favorite was chosen as the 1997 Perennial Plant of the Year by the Perennial Plant Association. Thrives best in well-drained, evenly moist soil with full sun. A reliable, compact perennial useful in the border, rock garden, edging or natural plantings. It has a long blooming period with vibrant blue flowers, grows up to 18 inches tall and has a compact growth habit. The striking violet-blue flowers are very attractive when set against a light colored background. Salvias are a member of the Mint family and share the families' characteristics of square stems; simple, oval or lance-shaped leaves with toothed margins and whorls of flowers produced on spikes. Many gardeners are familiar with the annual bedding plant salvia or the culinary salvia, but it is definitely worth exploring some of the ornamental perennial species too.