Summer-blooming spiky flowering plants under 3 feet. In garden design parlance, the verticals. We all need some, right? Herbaceous varieties of salvias and veronicas include lots of contenders. Although I’ve had some success with veronica, herbaceous salvias often melt away after a zone 10 winter. In addition to trying out Lysimachia ephemerum (again) and some penstemons, this summer I’m filling the spike void with a teucrium hardy to zone 6, maybe even 5, Teucrium hircanicum ‘Paradise Delight.’ The Iranian Wood sage is shrubby in character, crinkly rugose leaves, red-violet spikes. More drought tolerant than herbaceous spiky stuff and better suited to a summer-dryish garden, or so I’m hoping. The pale green inflorescences started deepening to violet this week.
I can already see that it won’t have that upright, regimental discipline that is characteristic of the herbaceous salvias. This teucrium wants to dip and twist. Admitting to a mad crush on a plant its first summer in the garden is not at all sensible or prudent, so I’ll just say the Iranian Wood Sage is looking very promising.
Mine are from Digging Dog Nursery in Mendocino, California.