Robert H. Asked
I have two Snow Hill salvias in my front yard. They are exposed to full sun. This is my second year of having them. My question is, is it natural for them to lie down almost flat? They look more like a life preserver wrapped in white. What can I do, if anything, to correct this?
The Gardener’s Answer
Hello, Robert in Ohio: Salvia x sylvestris ‘Snow Hill’ is an herbaceous perennial that provides pure white, spike-like flowers in the sun-loving garden. A favorite among bees and butterflies, it has a compact growth habit usually reaching about 20 inches tall each growing season. It is not common for this plant to flop or become leggy simply because it has a compact growth habit, but if it is growing in a moist soil that does not drain well or exposed to extreme humid conditions it can cause the salvia to flop over. This salvia prefers to grow in well-drained soils and will tolerate drought conditions. Another possibility is an animal lying down in the plants. These perennials in general are considered low-maintenance and do not have many insect or disease problems. It sounds like your plants are receiving sufficient sunlight so this should not be an issue. At this point staking or pruning may be necessary to keep the plants upright. Visit your local garden center to see what they carry in terms of stakes, or get your pruners out and cut all the way back to where the new foliage has emerged. It is still very early in the growing season so pruning may be your best option at this point. Removing spent blooms will encourage this salvia to continue blooming.