Salvia greggii 'Furman's Red' (Magenta Red Autumn Sage) - A durable selection of the evergreen subshrub that is native throughout southwest Texas and into Mexico. Light green glabrous leaves vary in length from 3/4 to one inch long. It is an upright plant growing to 3 to 4 feet tall by 2 to 3 feet wide with aromatic light green glabrous narrow 3/4- to 1-inch-long leaves. The 1-inch-long magenta red flowers clothe the branch tips throughout summer and into fall/autumn until short days and cool weather slow then stop their production.
Ideally suited to full sun in a well-drained soil with only occasional irrigation. It is cold hardy into the high teens and useful in USDA Zones 7 and above. This is an attractive and tough drought tolerant plant that draws hummingbirds and butterflies into the garden yet is not that attractive to browsing animals such as deer.
The species Salvia greggii is naturally found at elevations from 5000-9000 feet in the mountains and rocky slopes of Mexico and southwest Texas. The name Salvia comes from the name used by Pliny for a plant in the genus and comes from the Latin word 'salvere' meaning "to save" in reference to the long-believed healing properties of several Sage species. The specific epithet honors Josiah Gregg, (1806-1850), an American Naturalist who traveled through Texas in the early 1840s, recording the geology, geography and plants all that he saw in his Commerce of the Prairies and later joined a botanical expedition to western Mexico and California. Salvia greggii is commonly called Autumn Sage since it blooms through to first frost but also Texas Sage, but this can confuse it with Leucophyllum frutescens, which shares this common name.
Salvia greggii 'Furman's Red' was selected by the noted plantsman W.A. Furman of Kerrville, Texas in the 1970's and it remains to this day as one of the best and most vigorous of the Salvia greggii cultivars. We have grown this great cultivar since 1990 from plants first purchased from Monrovia Nursery in 1989. We also grow the very durable White Autumn Sage Salvia greggii 'Alba'.
Information about Salvia greggii 'Furman's Red' displayed on this page is based on our research about it conducted in our library and gathered from reliable online sources. We include observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery gardens and in other gardens that we have visited, as well as how the crops have performed in containers in our own nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others about this plant when we feel it adds information and particularly welcome hearing from anyone who has any additional cultural recommendations that would aid others in growing it.