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The Jerusalem sage is mounding to sprawling shrub with herbaceous stems and foliage growing 3-4 ft. tall and 4-5 ft. wide. Heavily textured leaves are 2-3 in. long, pale yellow-green above and white and woolly beneath. Bright yellow flowers occur in candelabra-like whorls on long stems during spring and intermittently over summer.

Jerusalem sage is native to dry rocky cliffs and slopes in coastal and inland areas of the Mediterranean region. Throughout the Inland Empire, it shows good adaptability to different types of soils and moisture variations. It is combined with other flowering shrubs on slopes and in mixed garden plantings where its foliage and flowers provide good character and contrast to other plants.

Water Needs

Jerusalem sage grows best on well drained soils with normal winter rains and low amounts of supplemental water during summer. Young plants will grow faster and flower longer with moderate amounts of water during winter and spring; established plants grow well with periodic deep irrigation in the summer.

The chart shown below provides a recommended baseline guide to the monthly irrigation schedule and volume of supplemental water needed to maintain healthy growth throughout the average year. It should be noted there are several months indicated by an asterisk (*) when winter rains can provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates it can grow with varying amounts of water; more water is desirable when grown in hot and windy locations.

Irrigation Schedule and Graph

Low Water Use Plants

Irrigation Schedule 2

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
Runs per Month 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x
Inches per Run 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1"
Inches per Month 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2"

Range of supplemental summer water: 7"-14"
Range of supplemental winter water: 0"-10"

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
For more information on how to use this Irrigation Schedule and Graph, follow this link.

For information how to calculate your irrigation system’s schedule and precipitation rate, please follow this link.

Plant Properties

Plant Type: Shrub
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Spreading, Mounding, Low-branching, Dense
Growth Rate: Moderate
Height: 3 ft. - 4 ft.
Width: 4 ft. - 5 ft.
Water Needs: Low 2
Foliage Color: Pale green
Flower Color: Yellow
Flower Season: Summer, Spring
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil, Rocky soil
Exposure Adaptations: Morning sun, Heat, Drought, Aridity, All day sun
Function: Residential spaces, Raised planters, Foliage accent plant, Flowering accent plant, Borders, Banks, Background plant


Cut back lightly after flowering stocks fade (5). In fall, cut back the plant to half its size to keep compact and reinvigorate (5). The fuzzy leaves can cause irritation to people with sensitive skin. If you think you might be affected, wear long sleeves and gloved when pruning (S). Additionally, when pruning, the fuzz can come off the leaves and cause respiratory irritation, so wearing a dust mask is also recommended when pruning or handling pruned materials (S).



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