A large and diverse genus with over 900 species and many hybrids. Most of them originate from Central and southern America , Central and Eastern Asia, and the Mediterranean.
The defining characteristic of the genus is an unusual pollination mechanism. They have two stamens and two thecae on each stamen are separated by an elongate connective membrane that enables the formation of a lever mechanism. When a pollinator enters a male flower for nectar, the lever causes the stamens to move and the pollen to be deposited on the pollinator. When the pollinator withdraws from the flower, the lever returns the stamens to their original position. As the flower ages, it becomes female and the stigma is bent down in a location that corresponds to where the pollen was deposited on the pollinator’s body.
Some of the plants in this family have culinary uses, in particular Salvia officinalis, which is referred to as Sage.
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Name Derivation: Referring to helping, saving, healing
Common Name: Salvia or Sage
Salvia is in the family Lamiaceae.