Salvia exserta

Described by Ginny Hunt as 'S. coccinea on steroids', this is an extremely vigorous Bolivian species, in flower just 8 weeks from sowing seed, and reaching a height of 5ft. a few weeks later. The orange-red flowers are numerous, with curled stamens. I had been told that this is an annual species, but this is questionable. It will not tolerate the mention of frost. It seems happiest in full sun, and is a thirsty plant. It is also prone to mildew on the foliage, which is unusual in South American species. This is still known as Salvia praeclara, but Salvia exserta is the correct name. A prolific setter of seed, cuttings will root very quickly. Photograph kindly supplied by Rolando Uria.