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Growing Salvia divinorum indoors.. (reading a lot of conflicting opinions!) Options
 
acacian
#1 Posted : 10/16/2022 12:21:18 AM

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Hey guys!

Trying my hand at growing a couple salvias again (indoors). They arrived here a week ago after being in a sub tropical humid environment. They currently look pretty healthy although there are a few older yellowish leaves and I've noticed very small white/yellow spots even on the healthier fresh green leaves. So I'd like to ask a few questions for those of you experienced in growing the plant..

I have read from one source that the yellowing is because of too much water - but then another says not enough.. and then another says it needs iron chelate.. Last time I'm pretty sure I watered them too often and they ended up dying so i'm a little hesitant to water them so regularly..this time I am thinking every 5-7 days with regular misting and I run my humidifier for a couple hours in the early parts of the morning as it is my understanding that they asborb the moisture better in the early day.

I am growing them next to a south facing window which lets a lot of indirect light into the room. The general consensus seems to be that indirect light is best, but some say a little direct morning sunlight is ok. I am in a high altitude area so despite being cooler climate, the sun is stronger .. what works for you guys?

I also read that fanning the plants helps them develop thicker stems - but I was concerned that it may dry them out a little and some sources also say they don't particularly like wind. Unfortunately I am currently beholden to the information avilable online in regards to cultivation - as I don't know anyone really who grows salvia. Would love for some peeps to chime in.. photos to come but I have to leave for work..
 

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_Trip_
#2 Posted : 10/16/2022 2:57:24 AM

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I'm by no means and salvia specialist but I was given a couple plants a while back.

I have been growing two plants indoors but in almost totally different conditions and soils. I am in a colder climate max min of around -4c in winters and +40c in summer.

Both get indirect morning light through obscure glass. East window.

Plant one has perlite, coco coir and fertilized rich soil but gets zero humidity. This thing gets punished. Sits under a heater in winter and 60% of its leaves curl and 60% of its leaves brown some die as they dry up (especially in winter with the heater). The rest of the year it gets no humidity. Yet it still grows all year round. It looks darker and wood-ier than plant number two. It gets water when it droops or when the top soil dries. But otherwise new growth always looks happy. I fertilize it maybe once a month with liquid fertilizer and fish/ seaweed tonic.

Plant two sits in the same spot but in a little terrarium, it has a mix of 40% rock (small) and 60% of the cheapest soil you can buy. The terrarium has a lid and provides great humidity. I have never needed to water it except when it was transplanted. It as a drainage hole at the bottom and gets a tiny amount of fertilizer and tonic ever 2 months. It looks healthier than the other one, greener and no dry leaves etc. Grows fairly quickly. (The terrarium is also used to root cuttings).

I've never had yellow leaves unless it turns yellow then quickly to brown from lack of humidity (so i cant give advice there). I do get purple leaves which fix themselves with fertilizer but this is rare. But i have found as long as you give it moist but well drained soil and humidity it'll thrive. I have friends nearby that grow outdoors in a greenhouse and they survive cold winters fine.

IMO I have found they can be finicky but they are also very tough if you cater to those 4 things, indirect light, drainage, moist soil and humidity (although they seem to survive without humidity).

If you want to give it the best chance in a colder climate without investing in a grow tent etc. Get a big glass vase/ terrarium etc with a lid and place it in that. It'll stay healthy all year round with little maintenance. You'll be able to travel without worrying about killing it.

Disclaimer: All my posts are of total fiction.

 
acacian
#3 Posted : 10/31/2022 4:44:07 AM

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Thanks _Trip_!

Have you got any photos of your plants? Would be interested to see the difference between the two. Thats encouraging that the unhappy one has still been alive for so long and is pushing out new growth.

I ended up repotting mine into bigger pots, and moving them outside as I was hoping they would acclimate to the fresh air as it has been very mild of late.. I bought a cheap humidity gauge and it said it was around 50-60% humidity which I had read was fine. Well.. I made the mistake of thinking that a sudden change would be fine as the weather was mild and felt humid. The first day they looked fine..

The next day it was really windy and copped it all day. I had read that fanning the plants helps to promote a thicker stem.. I stupidly did not consider the difference between light fanning and being blasted by wind. The leaves started curling straight away and blacking at the tips and edges at an alarming rate. I was mindful of keeping them in the shade however I am unsure whether it is shady enough.. they don't get any direct sun .. they have a fence behind them and they face south.. the sun is always behind the fence.

Now all the new growth is coming out black.. the leaves that were already established are mostly fine, which is encouraging - but it is worrying to see black tips on all the new shoots. I have put them in a small humidity tent and put lots of holes in it to allow air circulation. The humidity is generally around 70-80%. They have been in the tent for 4 days.. don't seem to be showing much improvement but I suspect they will take a little while to settle .. photos to come
 
_Trip_
#4 Posted : 10/31/2022 6:32:26 AM

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Yeah they are funny plants, give it time. They do acclimatise slowly to different conditions. The tent is the way to go. My abused one always takes a while to bounce back if I forget to water it or I take cuttings.

I did meet a guy recently growing them outdoors (in ground) in the Sydney region were it gets down to 2c. He had them acclimatised nicely outdoors in a nice shade area, centre of his yard. They looked good considering the location.
Disclaimer: All my posts are of total fiction.

 
acacian
#5 Posted : 10/31/2022 8:27:25 AM

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it gets real cold up here.. im in armidale where it gets freezing in winter
 
_Trip_
#6 Posted : 10/31/2022 11:12:53 AM

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Ah ok, surprised how cold it gets there after looking it up. Maybe consider a terrarium for indoors. I reckon it'll struggle in a unheated greenhouse if ya max min is about -10.
Disclaimer: All my posts are of total fiction.

 
acacian
#7 Posted : 11/1/2022 2:39:11 AM

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Yep I'm thinking I'll bring it back in.. it was pretty happy inside
 
 
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