Horminum disermas (L.) Moench
Salvia bisermas Houtt.
Salvia fleckii Gürke
Salvia rugosa Thunb.
Salvia disermas is a perennial plant with stems that can become more or less woody and persist. Multiple stems grow from a slightly woody rootstock, these are generally of upright growth, although some forms have a sprawling habit; the plant can grow 30 - 120cm tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine and food flavouring. It is grown as an ornamental for summer colour displays[
Southern Africa - S. Africa (Cape Provinces, Free State, Northern Provinces)
Well drained, rocky or stony soils; at elevations from 360 - 1,555 metres[
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Salvia disermas requires full sun with good drainage. It will survive with little water but responds well to regular watering, especially in summer[
When crushed the leaves produce a sweet aroma[
The fast growing plants get untidy after 2 - 3 years and need to be pruned back hard or lifted and replanted[
The aromatic leaves are used as a substitute for tea and also as a flavouring in cooking, although very sparingly[
An infusion of the fresh leaves and flowers is taken as a tonic to re-energize the body after a long illness and to bring down fevers. A teaspoon at a time of this tea is a good heartburn remedy.[
A lotion is made by steeping one cup of fresh leaves and stems in 2 litres of hot water for 15 minutes. This is applied topically in order to relieve skin rashes, stings, bites, pimples, infected scrapes, scratches and sores[
Seed - sow late spring and early summer into general potting soil mix. Seedlings germinate quickly and seedlings can be transplanted into well drained potting soil once first pair of true leaves appear. Grow on in pots for their first winter before planting out.
Semi-hardwood tip cuttings in spring and summer. Cuttings must be without terminal flowering bud. Place in rooting medium, 50% fine milled bark and 50% polystyrene (perlite, vermiculite and peat are alternatives). Place under mist or enclose in plastic bag to retain humidity. Keep warm but out of direct sunlight[
Division of the creeping rootstock.