What's more, this Salvia also serves an ethnomedical purpose: its leaves, when crushed, can be used to treat a cough, headache, fever and sore throat.
From a landscaping perspective, Hot Lips is a small, bushy shrub reaching between 2 and 5 feet high. Outdoors, it prefers full sun for best flowering results. Foliage is slightly woolly, silver-green and aromatic. The flowers are bright pink, with occasional off-white. They are also very fragrant, making this plant a great choice for any garden.
In terms of water requirements, Hot Lips needs regular moisture when actively growing and flowering, but can handle a bit of drought once established. As an evergreen, it keeps its foliage in most winter climates. It's mature plants can ad not only color and interest to the winter garden, but also a bit of cold hardiness as low as the mid-20's F for short duration.
As long as gardeners are able to give Hot Lips the full sun and regular water it needs, it will thrive. For gardeners in colder regions, it is especially suited for planting in a pot and bringing indoors during winter. It can handle temperatures down to 30F for brief periods of time if it is kept in a pot. During the winter, water the plant sparingly, and fertilize it with a slow-release fertilizer in the spring and early summer.