Salvia sonomenis purple flowers
Photo by Flickr user John Rusk

Sonoma sage

This plant grows well in the following regions:

  • CVCentral Valley
  • NCNorth and Central Coast
  • SCSouth Coast
Map of regions (click to enlarge)
map of California regions



Salvia sonomensis is just one of the many species of sage that are great for California gardens. There are many native and non-native species and cultivars that with low water needs that will attract hummingbirds bees, and butterflies to your garden. Las Pilitas Nursery has has a list of California native sages included in the More Information section of this page.

Sonoma sage, also called creeping sage, spreads to 10 ft. wide and about 1 ft. tall. Blooms from May to June. In California it can be found in the Coast Ranges, Peninsular Range, and Sierra foothills. Grows best in shade/part shade, under shrubs or in the shade of shrubs like Manzanita or Ceanothus. Temperamental if planted in interior full sun. Will grow in heavier clay soils as long as water doesn't stand. Will not tolerate regular summer water.

'Mrs. Beard' is a hybrid between Salvia sonomensis and Salvia mellifera that is low growing as well. It tolerates part shade inland but prefers full sun and needs full sun near the coast. Great on a sunny slope and a hummingbird magnet.

Sun needs:

  • Partial sun
  • Shade

Water needs:

  • Low water
Water needs information from WUCOLS unless otherwise noted