Lantana involucrata, also known as Buttonsage, is a native, carefree member of the Verbena or Verbenaceae family, with more than 150 species of plants.
This plant is native to Florida, South America, Mexico, the Galapagos Islands, and the West Indian islands. However, it’s naturalized in many temperate areas of the United States and can grow wild in states such as Texas and Louisiana.
In a tropical or semi-tropical setting, Buttonsage is an evergreen perennial plant. In cooler climates, it may be grown as an annual.
This plant is also known by the following common names:
- Teeny Weenie Sage
- White Lantana
- Wild Lantana
- White Sage
- Wild Sage
- Sea Sage
- Big Sage
This easy-growing, versatile, native, or naturalized plant is an excellent addition to any garden setting.
In this article, we share information on Lantana involucrata and provide details to help you identify, plant, and grow it successfully.
Lantana Involucrata Care
Size And Growth
This fast-growing, heavily branched shrub typically grows to a height of approximately 3′ feet; however, under ideal circumstances, it can grow 10′ feet high. Luckily, it tolerates heavy pruning well.
Flowering And Fragrance
The small, fragrant flowers of Lantana involucrata are arranged in clusters. Colors range from white to pink to pale lavender. The blooms transition into drupes of purple fruits. In tropical settings, these plants bloom year-round.
The oval leaves are a bit furry and have toothed edges. When crushed, the leaves emit a sage-like, spicy scent.
Light And Temperature
Full sun and consistently warm temperatures are best. Button-sage is winter hardy in USDA hardiness zones 8 to 11.
Watering And Feeding
Wild Sage is drought and heat-resistant and does well when watered as the wildflower that it is. Deep, occasional waterings are far better than frequent light waterings.
This easy-keeper plant does very well in poor soils. Little or no fertilizing is needed.
Soil And Transplanting
Lantana involucrata does well in dry, well-draining soil. It can thrive in sloping or ridge settings.
To transplant, here’s what you need to do:
- Dig a circle cleanly around the plant, leaving a distance of 6″ or 8″ inches on all sides.
- Then, use a sharp, clean spade or shovel to dig straight down, about a foot deep, around the plant.
- Immediately replant into a hole you have prepared.
- If the plant will need to wait before replanting, put it straight into a bucket of water until you can get it into the ground or a new container.
- When planting, give the roots a good foundation of light, airy soil. Surround them with prepared soil.
- Tamp it down lightly. Water thoroughly and then add more soil as needed.
Grooming And Maintenance
Lantana Involucrata can tolerate heavy pruning and can be kept compact and contained with frequent pruning.
How To Propagate Lantana Involucrata?
Buttonsage may self-sow or may simply ramble about and spread easily on its own.
Moreover, seeds may be directly sown into the garden early in the spring.
In cold climates, you can take cuttings early in the fall and grow them as houseplants through the winter to replant in the spring. They will produce roots equally well when started in water or soil.
Lantana Involucrata Pest Or Diseases
This rugged plant has few or no pest and disease problems when properly cared for.
However, providing ample light, heat, and well-draining soil is important. Also, avoid overwatering.
Is The Buttonsage Considered Toxic Or Poisonous To People, Kids, And Pets?
The sap of Buttonsage can cause skin irritation, so wearing gloves and eye protection is wise when pruning and handling this plant.
All parts of the plant can be very toxic to pets, people and livestock if ingested. Wild birds may eat the berries without ill effect.
Is The Buttonsage Considered Invasive?
This native plant is not considered invasive; however, it is easily confused with its aggressive cousin, Lantana camara, which is. Be sure to identify your plants correctly before introducing them to your garden.
Suggested Lantana Involucrata Uses
Involucrata lantana is a good choice for a low hedge, foundation planting, or ground cover among taller plants.
It also makes an excellent addition to your pollinator garden, as its blooms attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
This plant is also a good choice for a seaside garden because it is wind and salt tolerant.