The Salvia nemorosa is a genus from the Lamiaceae or Labiatae family and is commonly named woodland sage or Balkan clary. The Salvia nemorosa is native to southwest Asia and southeast Europe.

Nemorosa comes from Latin and means ‘wooded’. Another name that is often used for Salvia nemorosa is Salvia sylvestris.

The woodland sage forms a clump that gradually spreads. From the clump sturdy woody stems grow that stay erect. The Salvia nemorosa ‘Cardonna’ does not like too much moist and does enjoy the sun and warmth. This perennial is very tolerant to drought. Some chalk in spring will be appreciated.

The Salvia nemorosa ‘Cardonna’ has very characteristic flowers spikes with flowers that are whorled around the dark purple stem. If you cut the plant back to about 6 inches (15 cm) from the ground in July, after the first bloom, a second bloom will follow later that year. The flowers attract a lot of hummingbirds, bees and butterflies.

The Salvia nemorosa ‘Cardonna’ may become somewhat floppy and open up in summer, particularly in humid climates. It helps here as well to cut the plant back after first bloom. It will grow anew and is strong and upright again.

The woodland sage dies to the ground in the winter. Wait with cutting the stems till spring. The remains of the plant protect is from the cold in the winter and provide shelter and food for birds and insects.



Attracts bees: yes

Characteristic: newly emerging every year

Deer resistant: yes

Exposure: sun/ part shade

Flower color: purple

Flowering time: June – August

Foliage color:  green

Fragrant flower: no

Hardiness: -22 ºF/- 30 ºC

Height: 24 inches/60 cm

Soil: normal/ dry