oh, ugh, ugh, ugh, I am screwing you up big time
Ok, on the videos of good nectar plants you will see the real Russian sage Perovskia atriplicifolia Filigran
there. Also in my garden photo, this is the true Russian sage, very upright and tidy... The leaves need to be very narrow and feathery. Jason I only had two Perovskia atriplicifolia Filigran
last year and all the honeybees mobbed those 2 plants. Because the two plants were so successful, I bought tons more the next year to add to my garden.
The bad Russian sage hybrid has rounded leaves and is completely floppy. Maybe you also got regular Meadow Sage mixed up? They are also pretty floppy but do send up spires. My honeybees do not! like Meadow sage.
Here are closeups of the good Russian sage Perovskia atriplicifolia Filigran
. When I have time to re-edit, I will send you photos of the bad Russian Blue Spire / Mini Spire. The bad I only bought 2 plants because I was afraid that the original Russian sage may be too large and may push over the roses so it was a private experiment. I never mentioned the mini-hybrid to you because I didn't know how it would perform in my garden. But I never thought you'd pick up such a plant, yikes!
Bad Blue Spire or Mini Spire hybrid also does not bloom as long or as early as the original Russian sage. This proves my theory that garden folks need to stop hybridizing because hybridizing can negatively affect the bee-attractiveness of the flowers! Grrrrrr. Well, mine haven't bloomed yet so I will reconfirm the performance when they do.
Jason, Russian sage has an extremely long bloom season from June 1st all the way to the first snows...so if it doesn't snow until December, then that is how long Perovskia atriplicifolia Filigran
will keep on blooming. The pale blue flowers will shed and the deeper new purple flowers will come up... Here are more links on how yours if it had been the right one, should have looked like. That is the advantage of going to a nursery to buy the plant because you can observe the growth pattern and leaves right away...
See how neat and upright...http://www.gardeninggonewild.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/03/perovskia-echinops-achillea2.jpghttp://www.webanswers.com/post-images/6/6E/6A1C1FBD-14B3-FA99-6DBFAA5C4FBFD94B.jpghttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/_XpZ_btgT-Sg/TT8RZEF4ONI/AAAAAAAAAAk/yb_YsxbuyrI/s1600/russiansage+1.jpghttp://i243.photobucket.com/albums/ff108/kristinwebber/beaut0002.pnghttp://www.thetreefarm.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/thumbnail/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/r/u/russian-sage-plant-wilway.jpg
Here is the closeup of the real Perovskia atriplicifolia Filigran
I'm back! here to add a closeup photo of the bad Russian Mini-Spire and no, I didn't find any honeybees on it either. The honeybees are still obsessing over the real Russian sage and the Italian Oregano. As you can tell the plants look very different although the flower shares a similar color. Even the "spires" are a bit different in the formation.
OK other details. Italian Oregano requires a bit of partial shade to protect it from roasting. You will also need mulch to keep the plant rehydrated....Italian Oregano if it is grown in good soil and mulched soil gets to be one huge moppy plant. It looks like the Simpsons' Sideshow Bob, but boy do the honeybees like it!....Oregano prefers rich soils. Italian oregano normally grows from 12"-24" but when planted next to my roses which are fed with sea tea, they become mutant giants - over 3' tall. The flowers are very massive and heavy and will spill over everywhere!
Russian sage can tolerate drought and poor soil really well. Just make sure when you first transplant it that it gets good waterings. Lots of plants in will have transplant shock so initially water and make sure the roots are adjusted.
Finally do not attempt to transplant or plant new plants in the midst of the drought season. Their ability to survive can be cut as much as 2/3rds or more and will likely end up as dead as doornails. Do not succumb to "summer sales" lol! cool spring is always the best! Once Russian sage and GROUND-PLANTED Oregano establish themselves, you never have to worry about these plants ever! again. They'll come up year after year after year.