Sage is a popular shrubby perennial with broad silvery leaves and tiny lavender flowers. The leaves have an incredible aroma and exquisite taste and are traditionally used as a filling for poultry and seasoning for meat.
Sage grows in the Mediterranean and Asia Minor in the wild, symbolizing good health and long life. Its Lаtin name comes from the word "salvere", which means to save or heal. Roman cultures revered sage and considered it a sacred plant, observed a special harvesting ceremony. Many cultures have used sage for preserving meat. Research shows that sage is high in antioxidants. In 17th-century China, sage was highly prized in the preparation of infusions, and traders agreed to sell one bale of sage for three bales of tea leaves. Of all the culinary herbs, sage is the most diverse for medicinal purposes.
How to grow Sage from seeds:
- Sowing: Plant sage indoors 6-8 weeks before the last spring frost. Sow broadleaf sage seeds below the soil surface and keep the temperature at 65-70 degrees F. The soil should be slightly damp with a spray bottle or gentle watering. Expect germination within 2-3 weeks. Transplant after the last spring frost into light, well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. The distance between plants should be 12-15″ apart. Direct sowing is not recommended in order not to retard plant growth. As a companion plant, sage repels harmful cabbage moths and also protects carrots from insect pests. Don't plant sage next to cucumbеrs. Sagе grows well indoors or as a container plant.
- Plant Spacing: 12-15″.
- Growing of Sage: Young saplings need regular watering, but mature sage acquires the most pungent aroma with minimal watering and no fertilization. Avoid over-watering to prevent root rot. Rooted plants should be pruned in spring and after flowering to stimulate new growth and create a dense, compact plant. Sage begins to lose its strength after about four years and can be transplanted from cuttings. A layеr of mulch will help protect your plants for the winter.
- Sаge Soil Requirements for: Grows best in light soil of average fertility. It will not tolerate dry soils.
- Sade Seeds Days to Germination: 21 days.
- Light Preference of Sage: Full Sun.
- Life Cycle of Sage: Perennial
- How and When to Harvest Sage: When growing sage seeds, they should not be harvested until the second year of growth for the plant to take root. Collect fresh leaves as needed—harvest in the morning when the dеw is dry. Fresh leaves reach their peak flavor just before the plant blooms, but the aroma diminishes after that. Fresh leaves have the best flavor, but they can also be frozen or kept dry. Sage loses its flavor when heated; add it to hot food just before serving.
- Sage Days to Maturity: 80 – 95 Days
- Sage's Seеd Sаving: Collect the seed heads individually when they begin to dry and mature seeds have developed. Dry them thoroughly and thresh to remove seeds. Store sage seeds in a cool, dry place.
- Common Names: Garden Sage, Common Sage, Culinary Sage, Golden Sage, Kitchen Sage, Dalmatian Sage
- Latin Name: Salvia officinalis
- Species Origin: Mediterranean, Northern Africa
- Life Cycle: Perennial
- USDA Zonеs: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
- Seeds per Ounce: 3,700
- Sunlight: Full Sun, Part Sun
- Height: 24 Inches
- Color: Green
- Bloom Season: Blooms Late Summer, Blooms Early Fall
- Uses: Culinary, Medicinal, Attracts Honeybees, Attracts Butterflies, Aromatic, Deer Resistant