Crimson pitcher sage, or hummingbird sage as
it is also commonly known, is a coarse perennial with a stout glandular-villous
1'-3' stem growing from creeping rhizomes. Its leaves are opposite,
oblong to ovate and arrowhead-shaped with rounded teeth, a dark green
slightly wrinkled upper surface and an ashy-tomentose under surface.
The inflorescence is a spike of five or more viscid whorls subtended
by purplish bracts. Both the calyx and the corolla are two-lipped, the
calyx bristly and the corolla red to salmon-colored with two exserted
stamens. This species is a common inhabitant of grassy or shaded
slopes to 2000' in chaparral, coastal sage scrub and oak woodland from
Orange Co. to Central California, and blooms from March to May.
Click here for Latin name derivations: 1) Salvia
Pronunciation: SAL-vee-a spa-THAY-see-a.
Click here for Botanical