Sage

Sage

Sage is native to the Mediterranean region and commonly grown as a kitchen and medicinal herb or as an ornamental garden plant. All parts of the plant have a storng scent due to the essential oils within them. The whole herb is used for medicinal and culinary purposes. The leaves are the part of the plant most commonly used. The word sage or derived names are also used for number of related and non related species. The sage varieties used as spice stem from the Mediterranean and Asia Minor.

The Ancients and Arabians considered sage linked to immortality. It was first found northern Mediterranean countries and eventually spread to England, France and Switzerland in the fourteenth century. In the Middle Ages the herb was used in chicken and pig dishes as a sauce seadoning. The Greeks and Romans used it to flavor meats. The use of the herb dates to Chaucer and to Medieval times. Sage has been used since ancient times for warding off evil, snake bites, increasing women’s fertility, and more. The Romans likely introduced it to Europe from Egypt.

Description and Cultivation

Sage is short-lived semi-woody shrub that gets up to 60 cm tall with a similar spread. The stem is green at first, then becomes woody in its second year. It has intensely aromatic, thick, wooly, gray-green or multi-coloured, oval leaves to 7.6 cm long. The leaves have lemony, slightly bitter fragance. Flowers are blue, lilac or white. Many salvias have hairs growing on the leaves, stems, and flowers, which help to reduce water loss in some species. Sage is a fairly drought tolerant plant, but will grow better when moderately watered. It loves full sun and well drained. Can be started from seed, or start plants from cuttings of new growth in mid to late spring. Hardy to about 23°C and will grow to about 30-50 cm high.

Scientific Classification
Kingdom : Plantea
Division : Magnoliophyta
Class : Magnoliopsida
Order : Lamiales
Family : Lamiaceae
Genius : Salvia
Species : Salvia officinails