The Mexican Blue Sage, Salvia chamaedryoides, is a native to eastern Mexico at high elevations. For the Tucson and Green Valley areas, this perennial will need part shade.
Hardy down to 15 degrees, the Mexican Blue Sage has fragrant, silvery-gray leaves and bright blue flowers in the early spring. It will also bloom periodically in the summer, and again in the fall, but the main show is early spring.
The Mexican Blue Sage needs well-drained soil, so do not plant in heavy clay or where caliche clay is a problem. An ideal location is under the canopy of our native mesquite, or other trees providing filtered shade.
Hummingbirds love the Mexican Blue Sage, as well as other plants in the salvia family. Red Salvia and Cleveland Sage are both good choices for hummingbird gardens; but don’t forget the penstemon species as hummers love them too.
Reference: Mountain States Wholesale Nursery and Gregg Starr Nursery Plant Info Sheet, 1999.