Hot Lips Salvia Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
baby sage 'Cerro Potosi'


Commonly known as Baby Sage, 'Cerro Potosí' is a visually striking plant characterized by its vibrant flower and leaf features. The blossoms are a standout feature, flaunting radiant pink hues that catch the eye and add a dash of color to any garden setting. These flowers emerge in abundance, creating a dense cluster of color that is particularly attractive to hummingbirds and pollinators, bringing life and movement to the area they inhabit. The foliage of Baby Sage 'Cerro Potosí' offers a complementary backdrop to its bright flowers. The leaves boast a rounded shape, emitting a pleasant fragrance when brushed against or crushed, which is common amongst sage varieties. Their texture adds a sensory dimension to the plant, with a soft and slightly downy feel that makes them inviting to touch. As a whole, Baby Sage 'Cerro Potosí' presents a lush and appealing appearance. Its combination of striking pink flowers and aromatic green foliage results in a plant that is both aesthetically pleasing and functional for attracting wildlife. The plant's overall form is typically bushy, creating a full and robust presence in the garden. Whether used as a focal point or as part of a mixed border, Baby Sage 'Cerro Potosí' offers a splash of color and a touch of nature's perfume to any landscape.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Hot Lips Sage, Baby Sage, Graham's Sage, Blackcurrant Sage, Cherry Sage, Mountain Sage, Cerro Potosí Sage

    • Common names

      Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Baby Sage (Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí') is generally not considered toxic to humans. Most species in the Salvia genus, including Baby Sage, are used for ornamental purposes and some have culinary uses. However, ingesting large quantities of any plant may cause some discomfort due to the presence of plant compounds that are not meant for human consumption. If you suspect someone has eaten a large amount of Baby Sage and is experiencing adverse symptoms, it is best to consult healthcare professional.

    • To pets

      Baby Sage (Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí') is not commonly known to be toxic to pets. However, as with any plant, it is possible for some pets to have a sensitivity or allergic reaction to it. If your pet has ingested a portion of Baby Sage and is showing signs of distress, including vomiting, diarrhea, or unusual behavior, it is advisable to contact a veterinarian. Generally, the plant's toxicity to pets is considered low, and serious complications are rare.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2-3 feet (0.6-0.9 meters)

    • Spread

      2-3 feet (0.6-0.9 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts Pollinators: The plant is known for attracting bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects, which is essential for pollination in the garden.
    • Drought Tolerance: As a native to dry climates, it requires less water once established, making it suitable for xeriscaping and water-wise gardens.
    • Aesthetic Appeal: With its vibrant pink to red flowers, it adds a splash of color to garden landscapes and attracts visual interest throughout its blooming season.
    • Low Maintenance: It is generally easy to care for, needing minimal upkeep, which is ideal for gardeners of all skill levels.
    • Culinary Use: Some parts of the plant can be used in cooking, particularly for flavoring foods and drinks with a subtly minty taste.
    • Adaptability: It can thrive in a variety of soil types, from well-draining to moderately fertile, making it versatile for different garden settings.
    • Perennial Growth: As a perennial, it will return year after year, providing long-term structure and color in a garden setting.
    • Habitat Support: By planting it, you help provide a habitat and food source for wildlife, supporting local ecosystems.
    • Quick Growth: The plant can grow and establish itself relatively quickly, allowing for rapid enjoyment of its benefits.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Attracting beneficial insects: Cerro Potosí sage is known to attract butterflies, bees, and other pollinators, providing a food source and helping to pollinate other plants in the garden.
    • Erosion control: Its dense growth habit can be helpful for stabilizing sloped areas and preventing soil erosion.
    • Culinary enhancement: Although not a typical culinary sage, some adventurous cooks use the leaves to infuse dishes with a mild sage flavor.
    • Horticultural oil alternative: The plant's aromatic oils can sometimes be used as a natural leaf polish for other plants or as a component in homemade plant sprays.
    • Garden design: This sage is often used in rock gardens, xeriscaping, or as a low hedge due to its manageable size and attractive foliage.
    • Natural dye: The leaves and flowers can be used to produce a natural dye for fabrics or craft projects.
    • Wildlife habitat: Provides shelter and nesting areas for small birds and insects within its dense foliage.
    • Artistic inspiration: Gardeners and artists may use the striking colors and form of the Cerro Potosí sage as a living subject for paintings, drawings, and photography.
    • Herbal sachets: Dried leaves of the plant are sometimes used in herbal sachets to impart a pleasant aroma to drawers and closets.
    • Companion planting: Cerro Potosí sage may be planted alongside vegetables to assist in pest management due to its strong scent deterring some garden pests.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Baby Sage is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Baby Sage is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Healing: Salvia, commonly known as "sage," has a long history of being associated with healing properties. Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí', being a member of the sage family, is likely to carry this symbolic meaning.
    • Wisdom: The name "sage" is synonymous with wisdom. This plant, therefore, may represent the pursuit of knowledge and the wise use of it.
    • Cleansing: Sage is often used in cleansing rituals and is believed to purify spaces of negative energies. Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí' can symbolize cleanliness and the removal of negativity.
    • Longevity: The hardiness and perennial nature of Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí' can symbolize endurance and long life.
    • Spiritual connection: Sage is used in many cultures for spiritual purposes, thus Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí' might also be associated with spiritual awakening and connections.
    • Protection: Sage has been used traditionally to offer protection against evil. By extension, this plant might symbolize safety and shelter.

Every 1-2 weeks
500 - 2500 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-early summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Cherry Sage should be watered deeply whenever the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, which typically means watering once or twice a week during active growth in spring and summer. Depending on weather conditions and soil drainage, the amount may vary, but a general guideline would be to provide about 1-2 gallons per watering session for an established plant, ensuring even soil moisture without waterlogging the roots. In the fall and winter, reduce watering frequency as the plant's growth slows down, allowing the soil to dry out more between waterings. Avoid overhead watering to prevent disease issues and apply water directly to the base of the plant.

  • sunLight

    Cherry Sage thrives in full sun conditions, meaning it should receive at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily. The best spot for this plant would be an area where it gets plenty of morning sunlight and some protection from the intense late afternoon sun, especially in hotter climates. Still, it can tolerate full sun throughout the day if necessary.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Cherry Sage prefers temperatures between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal growth but can survive in temperatures as low as 15 degrees Fahrenheit. It is hardy in USDA zones 7 to 9, meaning it can withstand a certain degree of frost or cold weather. Ideal conditions would maintain a moderate temperature without extreme fluctuations.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Cherry Sage in the spring to encourage bushy growth and remove any dead or damaged branches. Additionally, light pruning for shape can be done throughout the growing season as needed. Pruning after flowering can also help to stimulate a second bloom and is best done by cutting the spent flower stems back to the base of the plant. An annual pruning of about one-third of the plant can help to maintain a vigorous, healthy form and promote abundant blooms.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Baby Sage (Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí') prefers well-draining soil with some organic matter. A mix of two parts garden soil, one part well-rotted compost, and one part coarse sand or perlite is ideal. Aim for a slightly acidic to neutral pH (6.0 to 7.0) for optimal growth.

  • plantRepotting

    Baby Sage should be repotted every 2 to 3 years to refresh the soil and accommodate root growth. It is important to ensure that the new pot is slightly larger than the old one to provide adequate space.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Baby Sage thrives in moderate to low humidity levels and does not require any special humidity adjustments. Average indoor humidity levels are typically sufficient for this plant.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place in bright, indirect light and keep away from drafts.

    • Outdoor

      Full sun to partial shade, protect from strong winds.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-10 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The life cycle of Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí', commonly known as Baby Sage or Cherry Sage, begins with seed germination, which usually occurs in warm, moist soil conditions in late winter or spring. After sprouting, seedlings grow into juvenile plants with small, aromatic leaves and sturdy stems. As the plants mature in late spring to early summer, they enter the flowering stage, producing small, tubular flowers that range in color from hot pink to red, attracting pollinators such as bees and hummingbirds. Following pollination, the plant sets seed which are then dispersed by wind or animal activity, allowing for the continuation of the species. Throughout its life, Baby Sage continues to grow vegetatively, often becoming bushier with pruning, and can live for several years with proper care including well-drained soil, moderate water, and full to partial sun exposure. In temperate climates, it may die back in the winter and re-sprout from the base in spring, completing its perennial cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-early summer

    • Propogation: For Salvia microphylla 'Cerro Potosí', commonly known as Baby Sage, the most popular method of propagation is through semi-ripe cuttings. This method is usually performed in late summer when the new growth has partially hardened. Take cuttings of about 3-5 inches (7.5-12.5 cm) long with a sharp, clean knife or pruners, ensuring each cutting has a few leaf nodes. Strip away the lower leaves, dip the cut end into rooting hormone powder or gel for better establishment, and then insert into a well-draining soil mix. Place the pot in a warm, well-lit area but out of direct sunlight to avoid wilting and maintain the soil moisture without keeping it soggy. Roots typically develop within 4-6 weeks, after which the new Baby Sage plants can eventually be transplanted into the garden or individual pots.