Phlomis fruticosa is a dense, rounded, branching upright shrub reaches a mature height of 2-5 ft tall and is slightly wider at the base. Jerusalem Sage thrives in full sun and well-drained soil. It requires moderate amounts of water for best growth. In the early part of the season, water more often, then reduce watering as the growing season progresses. The sage-like, aromatic leaves are oval, 2-4 inches long, wrinkled, grey-green with white undersides, and covered with fine hairs. The yellow and orange flowers attract butterflies, hummingbirds and beneficial insects, adding interest and life to the garden.
The mature plant is cold hardy in USDA Zone 9-10 and possibly to Zone 8 with heavy mulch and protection under cold frames. In cold regions (down to 30 degrees), it can be grown as a woody semi-evergreen in a sheltered spot, in well-drained soil, in large containers. This will enable it to move to shelter in winter.
In the fall, remove dead flower stalks and tip-prune if desired to main a more compact shape. As a otherwise relatively slow-growing plant, applying an all-purpose nutrient-rich fertilizer in spring is the best way to encourage dense foliage.
Phlomis fruticosa is an attractive and fragrant year-round plant providing interest in the landscape with its bright blossoms, green foliage and attractive form. With its easy care, it offers a striking impact in any garden bed and is a great choice for container gardening.