The Right Place
Red salvia thrives in sun, but tolerates partial sun, especially in regions where summers are really hot. It prefers ordinary fertile soil, moist, but not soggy. Buy bedding plants from the local nursery or garden center at planting time. Choose young plants that have rich green leaves, sturdy stems and swelling buds. Plant seedlings outdoors in the spring after all chance of frost is past and the soil has warmed.
Planting Nursery Stock
Choose an overcast day, or a time late in the day when the sun will not beat down on the new seedlings. To prepare a planting bed, dig down about 6 inches or more and turn over the soil with a trowel or shovel, breaking up large clumps. If it seems to be thick and clayey, mix peat moss or other organic material such as chopped leaves into the loosened soil to improve its drainage.
Smooth the soil surface and then dig holes about 1 to 1 1/2 feet apart that are as deep as the containers the seedlings are in. Gently tip each seedling out of its container and place it in a hole, taking care to disturb the roots as little as possible. Fill the hole with soil, firming it around each new seedling. Water generously. Spread a 2 or 3 inch layer of mulch on the soil around the newly planted seedlings to help keep it moist and to discourage weeds. Use chopped leaves, dried grass clippings, wood chips or a commercial bark product. For planting tools see Hand Tools For Digging and Planting in Yardener’s Tool Shed.