Scarlet Sage Seeds, Salvia Coccinea
If you are looking for a fantastic deep south perennial flower with lots of red power, Scarlet Sage is the answer.
Scarlet sage is a subshrub perennial in warmer climates and an annual where winter temperatures stay below freezing for more than a few hours at a time. Scarlet sage reaches 2-3 ft (0.6-0.9 m) tall, with 1-2 in (2.5-5 cm) triangular leaves on long petioles (leaf stems) opposite each other on a square stem. The showy flowers are bright red, about an inch long, and arranged in loose whorls along the upright stem. Blooms appear continuously from early summer to first frost. There are several cultivars, including pink ones, white ones and bicolored ones. Don't confuse this species with the popular bedding plant, Salvia splendens (also called scarlet sage), a frost-tender perennial from Brazil (usually grown as an annual), most of whose many flamboyant cultivars do not attract butterflies or hummingbirds, and do not reseed themselves.
Scarlet sage occurs naturally in dry soils and waste places from South Carolina to Florida and west to Texas and Central America, and in the West Indies.
Light: Does best in full sun but can tolerate intermittent shade.
Moisture: Tolerates drought, but flowering suffers without supplemental watering during dry spells.
Hardiness: Can be planted from seed and grown as an annual to USDA Zone 4. Will survive the winters in Zones 9 and 10 and sometimes in Zone 8. Will reseed itself annually in zones 6-8.
Germination: Barely cover seeds with grit or sand when temperature is above 72 degrees. In hardiness zones below 9, start indoors 6 weeks before last expected frost.