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The New Book of Salvias: Sages for Every Garden

By Betsy Clebsch

Drawings by Carol D. Barner

Clebsch is the Salvia Queen ... If you love salvias, this is the book for you.

Seattle Times

Salvia is derived from the Latin word salvare, "to heal," and for centuries salvias have been valued for their medicinal and culinary qualities. Salvias, commonly known as sages, grow throughout temperate and subtropical parts of the world, from sea level to altitudes of more than 11,000 feet (3400 meters). They occur in many forms: perennial, biennial, annual herbs, and evergreen or deciduous shrubs. These amazingly varied plants are also noteworthy for their remarkable resistance to pests and diseases, their drought tolerance–and their beautiful flowers. The New Book of Salvias: Sages for Every Garden is now available in paperback.

Betsy documents approximately 150 beautiful, garden-worthy species alphabetically, and includes botanical descriptions, information on habit, blooming cycle, recommended companion plants, and delightful historical tidbits of discovery and usage. In her ardent pursuit of salvias, Clebsch has explored the wild to collect plants and seeds to test in her California garden. The resulting wealth of cultural information in The New Book of Salvias ensures that our gardens will not only be exquisitely aromatic but also wonderfully picturesque.

Awards for this book: Garden Writers Association Garden Globe Award

Media reviews

"Betsy (Clebsch) has continued her research and documentation of this endlessly fascinating group of plants. The result is The New Book of Salvias — and a superior book it is ... but it is her engrossing story of each salvia that will inspire the reader to add just a few more to the garden."

Pacific Horticulture

"With the addition of more than 50 new species and nearly 100 new photographs and illustrations, this book surpasses Clebsch's first on salvias."

Garden Design

"Clebsch is the Salvia Queen ... If you love salvias, this is the book for you."

—Mary Ann Gwinn, Seattle Times

"Clebsch's book could make a salvia collector out of almost any ... flower lover. ... There is plenty of information about the conditions each plant needs to succeed."

—Molly Day, Muskogee Phoenix

"An expanded edition of Betsy's first wonderful book on salvias, describing more than 50 new species and cultivars and how to use them in your garden."

University of California Botanical Garden Newsletter

"From using native plants in new ways to locating nurseries and designing a native garden, this is packed with fine material."

Library Bookwatch

"Her ideas on plant companions and instructions on propagation should prove very valuable to salvia lovers."

—Nancy Brachey, Charlotte Observer

"Offers fascinating information about Salvias and how to use them in the garden."

—Jean Starr, Northwest Indiana Times

"Gives fine descriptions of all plants in the genus that you could wish ... Well illustrated with as many color illustrations as necessary."

—John E. Bryan, Gardening Newsletter

"In The New Book of Salvias, Betsy Clebsch, a noted amateur botanist and horticulturist who gardens in northern California, displays once again her experience with and extensive knowledge of this useful and diverse genus ... the author's expertise in growing salvias shines through."

—Judy Mielke, American Gardener

"It's impossible to do justice to these impressive plants in a short article. If you're really into salvias, read The New Book of Salvias by Betsy Clebsch."

—John Van de Water, Newark Star-Ledger

"Wonderfully practical ... a book that will be referred to often."

Geno's Garden

"The book is well written and includes valuable cultural information, botanical drawings and color photographs."

—Jeneen Wiche, Shelbyville Sentinel-News

"The book offers anything and everything one might need to know about salvia."

—Marlene Feduris, Amarillo Globe-News

"This revision includes more than 50 new entries, as well as many new photos and illustrations."

—Paula Refi, Perennial Notes

"Anyone who has enjoyed and used the first book will want to update their library with this new edition."

—R. Cox, California Garden

"What many consider to be the bible on the subject ... The second edition surpasses the already high standards set by the first."

—Chris Meyer, Southern California Horticultural Society Newsletter

"Heiser treats us with another gem."

—Rudolf Schmid, Taxon

"As soon as the first edition was released, it became the classic salvia reference book. The new edition is even better, with more photographs, beautiful illustrations, and the inclusion of 50 more plants."

—Amy Stewart, North Coast Journal

About the author

Betsy Clebsch

Betsy Clebsch is a noted amateur botanist and horticulturist in Northern California, having made and tended five gardens in Virginia, Texas, and California. Clebsch has participated in a number of plant explorations and regularly exchanges seed and rare plants, particularly salvias, with many botanical gardens.

Read more about Betsy Clebsch

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