BASICS: "Hummingbirds.....where is the person, I ask, who, on observing this glittering fragment of the rainbow, would not pause, admire, and turn his mind with reverence..." (J. J. Audubon).
This is a blog about my summer life at the Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary, at my winter garden, Calypso, in the Bahamas, and aspects of life in general.
This private sanctuary is now permanently closed to the general public, as a result of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. Only my friends and personal guests may visit (

Friday, August 22, 2014

Autumn Sage

It's cool once again - too cool for me - and thoughts turn to the looming fall. So today I''ll focus on autumn sage, Salvia greggii **. This grows naturally in dry, rocky, soil, southwest Texas and northern Mexico, but it does surprisingly well on Long Island, especially if it has good drainage. It often comes through the winter, and I now have had a small bush for 15 years, growing in a crack in a south-facing sheltered concrete slab. Here's a recent photo, by Greg Olanoff.

Typically it's red or pink, but there are a lot of varieties around, including the pretty "Hot Lips", with a a red-lipped white flower.
Crushing a leaf unleashes a wonderful aromatic smell. Salvias generally have aromatic smells, attractive to humans but unpalatable to deer, and it's this feature that makes my hummingbird garden here in woods infested with deer possible. Here's Salvia guaranitica *** (the commonly-available selection "Black and Blue") again (see yesterday's post) in another great photo by Greg Olanoff.

To end up here's another cute photo from Greg. Note the golden pollen at the base of the bill.

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