How to Grow Sage

Sage in potPotted sage

Follow my “how to grow sage” quick start guide because this awesome and versatile herb deserves a Top Shot Plant Pot Spot in your herb garden. Try and roll that one off your tongue!

.No, let's be serious! A lot of us think of chicken stuffing when sage is mentioned. So if you like stuffing that's a good enough reason to get the sage growing.

But I am going to tell you much more about this herb Salvia, a name derived from the Greek word save or heal. I will show you the different development stages of growth from planting the seed to the full grown plant and by what extraordinary healing powers it earns its famous reputation.

How to Grow Sage From Seed

It starts off just a humble seed like any other seed that can be sown in an all-purpose potting compost on your kitchen windowsill if you like.

But the seedling will pop through in 10 to 14 days. Pretty fast start to life.

Even at this early stage sage is making a statement. My specimen took exactly 11 days during which time I kept the compost warm and moist and covered with a cling film.

It's best to plant the seed in March and by Autumn it will be a mature and sturdy plant, not July like I did, but then, I was thinking just to grow it indoors all year round.

How it ended up in my patio herb garden escapes me. Maybe I ought to take it as a tea to improve the old grey matter eh!.Any how, it stood up to the severe winter months and is now a strong strapping plant.

How to Grow Sage From Cuttings

No scratching your head about this method. The mother plant does it all. All you need to provide is the compost which you bank up around it and the side shoots will root.

Later you can take up the whole plant and snip off the rooted shoots and plant them in a new location not in the same soil. Sage is particular and doesn't like this treatment. Give them fresh compost.

How to Grow Sage to Maturity

In just 7 days my healing plant had grown to a healthy 5 centimetre tall, 3 week old baby, featuring some of its distinctive characteristics, four little hairy and wrinkly leaves!

In just 5 more weeks the herb would be 2 months old. So if you sow your seed in March the seedling would be ready for planting out at the end of April or soon after when the last of the frosty weather is over..


While resident on the kitchen windowsill, my sage wilted quickly when the temperature soared on sunny days. A quick drink of water soon perked it up but it was wiser to place the plant in a more shady position rather than constantly dousing it with water.(Maybe that`s the reason I planted it in the outdoor trough.)

Once your sage has established itself, it doesn't take much looking after. Just check it for bugs like aphids or spider mites. Give it a good spray of plant soap specially made for edible plants and non toxic to keep the bugs at bay.

If you see the leaves on a potted sage getting a bit yellowish, it's telling you it has outgrown the pot. Either change to a larger container or replant in the ground. As I mentioned, I have mine in a narrow trough and going by the yellow ting in the leaves it's time to re-house.

Letting the Sage Bloom

Mid-spring is a time to prune back the sage. It will bush with fresh leaves but keep on the watch! Flower buds can appear unexpectedly.

Pinch them out so the plant will continue to grow new leaves and become bushier, but go ahead and let it flower if that`s what you want to do. Sage flowers are an attraction for bees and other pollinators and they look handsome.

Respect to Sage (Salvia) The Healer

It is said sage aids memory, makes your teeth white, makes you pee, eases symptoms of menopause, helps digestion, darkens grey hair, freshens breath, and here is one for the shopping list, the wine is a nerve and blood tonic. ;-)

Well that's a tall order and only the tip of the iceberg. There so much more to this humble but royal plant. At least remember some of them to recite at your dinner party before the guests refuse your sage and onion stuffing!

Talking about dinner parties, would you like the recipe for sage jelly? I'll ask a friend of mine. Watch this space!

"Eat sage in May, and live for aye"

I`ve heard of some wierd and wonderful uses for sage. Personally wine and stuffing are my favourites.
If you like sharing what you like, here`s the place to tell your old sage stories and the rest.

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