Purple Sage
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Purple Sage
ntroduced Photo: Aarti Khale
Common name: Purple Sage, Texas Sage, Texas Ranger, Silverleaf, Cenizo
Botanical name: Leucophyllum frutescens    Family: Scrophulariaceae (Figwort family)

Purple sage is a dense rounded 3-5 ft semi-evergreen shrub, in the desert conditions of Texas. However in the many wet regions of Indian, it can be a more open 5-8 ft plant. It has 0.5-1 in wavy-looking ovalish alternate leaves with silvery velvety appearance. The five-lobed tubular 0.5-1 in flowers are borne singly in the leaf axils. They have spotted throats and a typical dogflower family character. The flowers appear after summer rains, sometimes covering the plants with white, pink, lavender, purple, or blue blossoms for a spectacular week long display. The flowers are followed by two-valved capsules filled with small wrinkled seeds. Purple sage comes from shrublands on limestone slopes in the Chihuahuan Desert of Texas, New Mexico, and northern Mexico. It is now widely cultivated in Florida and Southeast Asia, where it flowers magnificently in steamy tropical weather.

Identification credit: Ajinkya Gadave Photographed in Maharashtra.

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