Plants Management AustraliaThe faces behind autumn/fall ‘Salvia Season’

Growers and gardeners all over the country are excited about their salvias at the moment. Autumn/fall is a great time for this genus, with plants in full bloom bringing a riot of colour into the garden .

Below is a video about the Salvia Wish Collection that brings the plants to life, as filmed in Amanda Mackinnon’s own garden, who has a personal connection to these plants as she has worked so closely with the breeders and also with Make-A-Wish Australia® . This is a project that means a lot to everyone who has been involved in it. There are 3 plants in this series – ‘Wendy’s Wish’, ‘Ember’s Wish’ and ‘Love and Wishes’ and we love them because they are so easy to grow, are very forgiving of difficult conditions such as poor soils, inconsistent water levels and extra challenges like steep slopes!

Salvia 'Wendy's Wish'

Salvia ‘Wendy’s Wish’

Salvia 'Wendy's Wish'

Salvia ‘Wendy’s Wish’

‘Wendy’s Wish’ was the first to hit the market back in 2008 and quickly established itself as a favourite for saliva enthusiasts across many continents. It displays its vibrant magenta flowers for most of the year and these are further highlighted by the maroon stems of the plant. It seems to nearly be in flower all year round and requires little maintenance. At times the stems seem to grow so fast they can get a bit leggy, but a quick trim soon sorts this out. In fact, you can trim this plant back to almost nothing (no experience required) and in no time it has bounced back to a lovely dome shape.

‘Wendy’s Wish’ was named after its discoverer – Wendy Smith – and the name represents Wendy’s desire to see part of the proceeds from the sale of this plant go to Make-A-Wish Australia® What a story Wendy started!

Flowers on Salvia 'Ember's Wish'

Flowers on Salvia ‘Ember’s Wish’

Lyn and Paul Shegog with Salvia 'Ember's Wish'

Lyn and Paul Shegog with Salvia ‘Ember’s Wish’

‘Ember’s Wish’ is a sport off ‘Wendys’ Wish’ – the flower is a beautiful bright coral colour – discovered by the team at Plant Growers Australia. Steven Eggleton and Howard Bentley who head up PGA’s breeding team, quickly recognised a new flower colour and were keen to continue to legacy that Wendy initiated with Make-A-Wish. To take the story one step further they offered up the right to name the new variety with all proceeds raised being donated to Make-A-Wish® . Well, this saw an extra few thousand dollars donated directly to Australia’s seriously ill children as well as another plant on the market that was raising ongoing funds for a great charity.

On auction night it emerged that the highest bidders were Paul and Lyn Shegog. This Hobart couple are true inspirational. Paul and Lyn tragically lost their own two children to a rare genetic condition and have been involved with Make-A-Wish® for many years. They were determined the plant should be named in loving memory of their children and delighted that part of the proceeds from the sale of this variety will be donated to Make-A-Wish® for many years to come. Paul and Lyn have experienced first hand the real difference the power of a wish can make and the vital support provided by Make-A-Wish all around the country. The name ‘Ember’s Wish’ reflects the names of the Shegog’s children, Emma and Brett but fittingly also reflects the flower colour itself.

Salvia 'Love and Wishes'

Salvia ‘Love and Wishes’

Salvia 'Love and Wishes'

Salvia ‘Love and Wishes’

The third instalment in the collection is ‘Love and Wishes’. This hails from another independent plant breeder – John Fisher. John was just as keen to support Make-A-Wish® and we are delighted to now have three stunning plants on the market that represent a long term commitment to Make-A-Wish® Australia. ‘Love and Wishes’ offers a dark purple flower and is already looking to be the favourite amongst many. Its deep tones have captured the imagination, particularly in the USA and EU marketplaces.

Already in excess of $15,000 has been donated back to Make-A-Wish® Australia and we hope this continues long into the future. They are great plants with a great story behind them. It just shows what one idea or kind thought can turn into.

[This post is brought to you by Plants Management Australia]

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Plants Management Australia

About Plants Management Australia

Plants Management Australia is an Australian based licensing and marketing company which manages the protection and introduction of new plant varieties across the globe. PMA represents the interests of independent breeders, providing professional management for new varieties and quality, transparent service.

5 thoughts on “The faces behind autumn/fall ‘Salvia Season’

  1. I have planted five new Salvia this autumn but you are tempting me to plant more, Amanda! Lovely to hear the touching stories behind this collection.

  2. All three are amazing plants, and yes – have amazing stories behind them. Every time I look at one of them in my garden of think of the people behind them and all the things they have been through.

  3. Deb on said:

    I have Wendy’s Wish….planted about three months ago….magnificent…and the bees love it too!! What a lovely idea to join with Make a Wish……Thankyou for the kindness involved in the work and consideration needed to bring such an idea to pollination!!

  4. steven on said:

    Thanks Amanda. Its great to hear the stories behind these salvias. Last summer I decided to change my small vegetable garden to a perennial garden to enjoy more colour and to use less water and the salvias I planted were by far the stand out winners. They required minimal watering and kept flowering and flowering. Loved them. So after reading your article now it looks like I’ll be getting some of these to add into my garden for next season!! Thank you.

  5. Thanks Steven and Deb.
    If you like Salvias, the Heatwave Collection are also worth checking out. Great range of colours.

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