Colors of the Fall

You’ll see these three plants performing their magic in the best landscapes this fall. From left to right, it’s Gold Star esperanza, firebush and Mexican bush sage (Salvia leucantha).

Gold Star esperanza is a selection of a lovely plant from Southwest Texas. It’s bright yellow flowers are favorites with hummingbirds all summer and fall. It’s winter-hardy in the southern third of the state.

Firebush (Hamelia patens) is another South Texas perennial that’s used as a foliage and flowering annual in the rest of the state. It grows to 2 to 3 feet tall and wide, and its fall colors are coppery-red, both in flowers and foliage. Hummingbirds love it.

Mexican bush sage (Salvia leucantha) is a tender perennial, too, and like the others, it’s native to South Texas. Where it typically might be lost to the cold, it can be cut to the ground immediately after the first freeze, then mulched heavily for the winter.

Posted by Neil Sperry
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