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Growing Salvia; sage

Do you want to grow Salvia, or better known as sage?  Yes you do.

Salvia or the common name Sage refers to  a large group of plants, nearly 500 species, which are native to Mexico and South America. Salvia species include perennial, biennial, and annual plants.

In my garden I grow a Herb Salvia ‘Common Sage’ and a Flowering Salvia ‘Victoria Blue’

Both Beauties!

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One a banquet for your mouth ‘Common Sage’, which we use in our savory roasting.  One a baquet for your eyes.

There is even a type of Salvia named ‘Divinorum’ that is legal for people to smoke for its hallucinatory experiences.  I Don’t grow that one!

We know what that is a banquet for! 🙂

Herb Salvia or Common Sage is a handsome shrub with downy, gray-green foliage.  It thrives in a sunny garden location and very well drained soil, it is a native of Mediterranean areas, so no wet feet.

Common sage is beautiful, but there are several other varieties even more ornamental because of their leaf color. Purple sage, golden sage, and tricolor sage can add great variety and accent to the garden, although all tend to be less hardy than regular sage.

I would start with plants and not do seeds.  Seeds take a long while to establish and the leaves can end up not having the same leaf shape or color as its parent plant.  You can also start from wood cuttings….

The plant will overwinter well, unless it is extremely cold where you live.  After four or five years the plant will become extremely woody and need to be replaced.

Garden Sage will also flower, but its display pales in comparison to its Flowering cousin.  Get it, Pales! 🙂

The Perennial Salvia is a flowering relative of the familiar kitchen sage.

Flowering salvias produce spikes of small, densely packed flowers atop aromatic foliage. They are heat and drought tolerant, blooming from late spring to late summer in shades of blue, violet, red, pink, and white. Plants grow 18 inches to 5 feet tall, depending on the variety.  It is also deer resistant, attracts hummingbirds and is a great cut flower.

GROW SALVIA!  These guys are a gem to have in the garden!!

A variety I want to add to my selection this summer is ‘Black & Blue’.  If we have a hard winter, it most likely won’t survive, it is hardy in Zones 7-10.
So unless I want to treat it as an annual I will have to pop it up and bring it inside to the greenhouse in late fall to see if I can keep it going until the following spring.
It is a favorite amongst the bees and hummingbirds too!

FUN FACT:

In the 17th Century, it was believed that the condition of a home’s sage bush reflected the financial state of the home.  If the sage bush was flourishing, it was thought that the home’s finances were also.  In the days of the Roman Empire, women used a strong infused tea of the herb to darken their hair.

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