Sage is a large group of planst a subset of which are cullinary. The most commonly used cullinary sage is Salvia officinalis. It's an important ingredient in stuffings and one of the components of poultry seasoning. Sage is a popular ingredient in herbal blends. It's easy to grow as a perennial in Zones 5 - 10 as long as it's in well-drained soil. Attractive in containers which can be overwintered indoors.
In addition to the common cullinary sage, there are other interesting edible sages. Pineapple sage S. elegans smells like its namesake and produces stunning magenta flowers in late summer. Pineapple sage is the least hardy of the cullinary sages will need to be brought indoors during any winters where the lows reach 20 ° F. Or, you can just replant it in the spring — it grows quickly.
Blue Sage S. clevelandii is a North American native and can be used as a substitue for common sage in the kitchen.
- Perennial sub-shrub herb.
- Full sun to partial shade.
- Start seed indoors or buy plants. To germinate planted seeds, keep the soil temperature between 60 - 70 ° F. 90 - 200 days to maturity. For a detailed spring planting schedule, check out this Edibles Seed Starting & Planting Schedule.
- May also be started from cuttings. Will root in about 4 weeks. Instructions for propagating plants from cuttings.
- Plant into garden after all danger of frost has past. Frost dates by US state and Canadian province.
- Some varities need winter protection where the lows are under 15 ° F. To be sure of a crop each year, root a few stem cuttings each spring.
Planting and Tending
- Plant in garden AFTER the last frost (dogwoods will be in full bloom) or use special protection to get ahead of Mother Nature. Soil temperature should be at least 55 ° F to transplant.
- Average soil. Good drainage is essential.
- Water with a liquid organic fertilizer one month after setting out in the garden.
- Cut back in the spring (NOT fall) to encourage bushy new growth.
- Repels cabbage moths, carrot rust beetles, flea beetles & slugs.
- Cabbage family
- Visit this link for a complete Vegetable and Herb Companion Chart.
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You may also appreciate these books on growing herbs.