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Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout' (lyre-leaf sage)

Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout'

lyre-leaf sage

Grown mainly for the foliage, 'Purple Knockout' has compact basal rosettes of shiny burgundy leaves that turn to deep purple in summer, then to red in the fall. Spikes of pale lilac-blue flowers appear in spring and summer, but sometimes the flowers have only calyces and no petals. We have not been able to determine the cause of this, but a cut back of the stems promotes new blooms that often have petals the second time around. Petals or no, the flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies. Very easy to grow in just about any soil, it will self sow to spread and become a dense groundcover that makes a great native substitute for Ajuga.

SIZE
Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout' LP32 - 32 per flat Availability
Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout' - 50 per flat Availability
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Height

18 Inches

Spread

12 Inches

Spacing

10-12 Inches

Bloom Color

Violet

USDA Hardiness Zone 6-9

lyre-leaf sage Interesting Notes

Grown mainly for the foliage, Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout' has compact basal rosettes of shiny burgundy leaves that turn to deep purple in summer, then to red in the fall. Spikes of pale lilac-blue flowers appear in spring and summer growing up to 18” tall. The flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies and the seed in winter feeds smaller songbirds. ‘Purple Knockout’ is very easy to grow in just about any soil, it will self-sow to spread and become a dense groundcover that makes a great native substitute for Ajuga. Introduced by Jelitto Perennial Seeds in 1999.


Salvia lyrata is native to the wood's edge, thickets and tall meadows of the eastern US and lower Midwest. It prefers average to wet, clay or sandy soils in full sun. Lyre-leaved sage is remarkably drought and humidity tolerant. It tolerates light foot traffic and can be mowed. Sometimes the flowers have only calyces and no petals. We have not been able to determine the cause of this, but a cut back of the stems promotes new blooms that often have petals the second time around. When happily situated, Salvia lyrata self-sows or spreads by rhizome.


Salvia lyrata ‘Purple Knockout’ is a wonderful groundcover and an excellent addition to a rain garden or meadow setting. While the plant can take periodic flooding and moist sites in summer, a climate that experiences cold, wet winter can experience winter losses. It is best for it to be situated in a freely-draining site in cold, wet climates. 

Salvia lyrata 'Purple Knockout' Growing and Maintenance Tips

It prefers average to wet, clay or sandy soils in full sun. Drought and humidity tolerant. Cut back flower stalks if no petals appear and it will rebloom. In colder climates, Salvia lyrata prefers free draining soils with gravel or sand - too much soil moisture can result in winter losses. 

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Sun
Full Sun
Part Sun
Part Sun
Moist
Moist
Songbird-friendly
Songbird-friendly
Pollinator-friendly
Pollinator-friendly
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Hummingbird-friendly
Hummingbird-friendly
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant
Groundcover
Groundcover

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Average
Dry
Green Infrastructure
Green Roof
Lawn Alternative
Meadow/Prairie
Wetland Indicator Status
Falcutative Upland (FACU)
Plug Type
Horticultural Plug
Attributes
Native to North America
Ornamental Foliage
Clay Tolerance
Season of Interest (Flowering)
Late Spring / Early Summer
Propagation Type
Seed cultivar