Salvia Companion Plants

Salvia plants look amazing on their own but combine easily with other sun lovers in a mixed bed or border for long-lasting color. This heat- and drought-tolerant plant grows as an herbaceous perennial in zones 5 through 9. Stems can reach 2 to 5 feet tall and are dotted with tiny, often purple-hued flowers. Select a spot in full sun with good drainage. Salvia is not tolerant of consistently damp conditions. 

Salvia has an upright, mounded growth habit; with time, this plant will spread. Plants that go well with salvia include lantana, purslane, coneflowers, and sedum. Leave enough space around salvia plants when creating a mixed planting so air can circulate, and there is plenty of room for plants to mature.


Shrubs To Plant With Salvia

Shrubs that require full sun make good companions for salvia. Plant lilacs behind salvia so both plants are on display. Lilacs bloom in the spring as the herbaceous salvia is starting to grow. The salvia will begin to bloom around the time the lilac shrub is done blooming, so you will have a steady floral display. Salvia pairs well with Weigela for another flowering shrub option. Plant salvia in front of boxwood so the flowers will stand out against the evergreen foliage.

Perennials To Plant With Salvia

Salvia is a low-maintenance perennial, and featuring it among other perennials makes for a full-looking landscape that returns year after year without much work. Easy-care plants like coneflowers are a good match. The large blooms of coneflowers contrast nicely against the small salvia flowers while supporting butterflies and other pollinators. Catmint is another perennial with a similar look to salvia and similar care needs, making it an excellent option to include in a mixed planting.

Annuals To Plant With Salvia

Feature annuals with a perennial like salvia for a new and unique look each year. The bright and bold lantana flowers can be used to contrast the cool tones of salvia blooms. Some salvias come in hot colors and fit easily into a tropical garden design with lantana, purple fountain grass and canna lilies. Purslane is another annual that boasts showy flowers and a low profile, so plant purslane in front of the salvia. These annual plants need full sun, making them a good match in terms of care.


Best Companion Plants For Salvia in Containers

Autumn stonecrop or sedum makes for a wonderful companion in a container with salvia. The thick, succulent foliage of sedum has a very different look from the thin, slightly textured salvia leaves. Plant the taller salvia in the middle of a container and surround it with the shorter sedum for a tiered planting. Position the container in full sun so all of the plants thrive.

Plants Not To Grow With Salvia

Impatiens and coral bells are plants that do not work well in a shared space with salvia. The care needs of these plants are too different from salvia, so the conditions that make one plant thrive would be detrimental to the others. Large shrubs or trees can potentially make nice companions for salvia, but ensure the plants are positioned so the salvia receives full sun.

Best Plants To Grow With Salvia





Lilac Shrubs

Lilac Shrubs



Salvia needs full sun, moderate water, and good drainage to thrive, and the best companion plantings will have these same care requirements. Coneflowers, lantana, and sedum are examples of plants that look lovely when paired with salvia and happily live in similar conditions. These plant options will provide long-lasting color with minimal effort from the gardener.

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Author Alison Cotsonas - Published 09-08-2023