The Turkish sage

Phlomis russeliana, also known as Turkish Sage, is a member of the Lamiaceae family that grows in the University Parks’ Hayrick Border. It is a hardy perennial which grows to around 90cm tall; its leaves are mid-green with a hint of grey. The flowers are interestingly-shaped; as each grows up, it produces a whorl of pale yellow flowers, with another flower spike emerging from the centre. The plant flowers from mid-summer and can last several weeks in the right conditionsIt loves bright sunlight, can tolerate an exposed location and needs moist but not water-logged soil. It looks great as part of a Mediterranean-style planting, or is equally at home as part of a herbaceous border like the Hayrick. For added interest, leave the old flowers on the plant as they look great with the winter frosts on them. Turkish Sage needs little pruning, apart from cutting back any frost-damaged shoots in spring. At this time of year you can also propagate the plant through division. For more information, see the RHS website.