Scrumptious in hearty autumn and winter dishes, sage pairs properly with pork and hen, tastes divine with butternut squash, and works properly in quite a lot of soups, stews, and pasta dishes. Rising sage in pots is a good way to have a contemporary provide of this culinary herb proper outdoors your door!
Frequent sage (Salvia officinalis) is technically a small evergreen subshrub used as a culinary herb. It has a woody stem, with inexperienced or grey leaves and purple or blue flowers. A part of the mint household, sage originated within the Mediterranean area like so lots of its herb cousins. At the moment it’s widespread in lots of elements of the world. Since historical instances, sage has been used for each medicinal and culinary functions.
Wildly versatile, sage is a must have in any container backyard and is good for pure pest management and pollinator gardening too!
Learn on for all the small print about easy methods to develop sage in pots and containers!
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The best way to develop sage in pots
Sage is an easy-care herb that’s drought tolerant and might develop properly in a spread of situations. Be sure you present wealthy, well-draining soil and medium to full solar, and you need to be good to go.
Whereas naturally tailored to dry climates, younger sage vegetation want just a little additional care and extra frequent watering, preferring to be watered a couple of times every week whereas they’re simply getting established.
As vegetation mature, scale back watering considerably and provides vegetation a deep drink each week or two.
Does sage do properly in containers?
A hardy herb that grows as a perennial in zones 5 and above, sage can develop fairly giant (as much as 3’ tall) and infrequently does finest with in-ground planting. That stated, with just a little additional care, rising sage in pots can work very properly!
Rising sage from seed
Sage is a slow-growing herb and is simpler to start out from cuttings; nonetheless, you’ll be able to develop sage from seeds too.
For indoor planting, begin your seeds six to eight weeks earlier than your final frost date (discover yours utilizing this frost date calculator, for those who’re unsure!). To get began, scatter your sage seeds throughout a flat of seed-starting combine and canopy them with about 1/8” of soil.
After that, be sure you maintain your seeds properly moistened, however not soggy, till they germinate, which might take wherever from 3 to six weeks.
As soon as your vegetation have two units of true leaves and are about 4” tall, they’re able to transplant outdoors.
Whereas sage seeds usually do higher when began inside, you may also attempt immediately sowing them outdoor after the soil is heat and all hazard of frost has handed. Simply scatter your seeds, cowl them with 1/8” of potting soil, and maintain your containers well-watered till your sage germinates.
As a result of sage doesn’t develop reliably from seeds, attempt planting extra seeds than you assume you’ll want as germination charges could be fairly low, then skinny your vegetation out later as wanted.
The best way to develop sage from cuttings
As sage could be so gradual to germinate, beginning new vegetation from softwood cuttings, fairly than seed, is commonly the best choice.
You may usually discover starter vegetation at backyard shops or farmers markets.
In the event you’d like to start out your individual from an current plant in your backyard or a good friend’s, propagation cuttings could be taken at any level all through the rising season; simply snip off a wholesome part of stem that’s about 4 to six” lengthy and make your reduce proper beneath a leaf node.
After taking your slicing, fastidiously take away the leaves from the underside 2 to three” of the stem after which place your sage slicing in a glass of fresh water.
Whereas your sage plant is growing roots, be sure you change the water in your glass often to stop illness unfold.
After about 4 weeks, your sage slicing ought to start to develop roots. As soon as these roots are 2” lengthy, transplant your slicing to soil and maintain it properly watered. It is going to take one other three to 4 weeks on your plant to turn out to be sturdy sufficient to transplant outdoor.
To keep away from transplant shock, be sure you harden off your new sage vegetation for every week or extra previous to transplanting. Try my publish about easy methods to harden off seedlings for directions!
Greatest types of sage for containers
Greatest containers for rising sage
So far as herbs go, sage is on the bigger aspect so, when rising sage in pots, go for the biggest container you’ll be able to. A minimal measurement pot for a single sage plant must be at the very least 10” diameter by 8” deep; nonetheless, if you wish to plant different herbs together with your sage, select a pot that’s at the very least 18” diameter.
As a result of sage does finest in dry situations, keep away from planting your sage in plastic pots, which might maintain roots too moist. As a substitute, search for terracotta planters or material develop luggage, as these usually present higher drainage and airflow for plant roots.
My favourite containers for rising herbs, together with sage, are material develop luggage. They supply aeration and assist keep wanted moisture ranges, with out drying out too quick or holding in water.
Rising sage in containers outdoor
- Sluggish to get began, sage can take 3 to six weeks to germinate.
- When transplanting outdoor, ensure your vegetation have satisfactory house and attempt to house your sage vegetation at the very least 18” aside or plant them in 10” diameter pots.
- It is going to take about 75 days from germination on your sage leaves to achieve a harvestable measurement.
How usually to water sage
Sage is native to the arid areas of the Mediterranean and doesn’t want lots of moisture.
For mature vegetation, water your sage as soon as each week or two and permit soil to dry out completely between waterings.
Fertilizer for sage in pots
In the event you planted your sage in business potting soil, it’s possible you’ll not want any further fertilizer. Sage is a lightweight feeder and an excessive amount of fertilizer can truly weaken your sage plant’s taste.
In the event you do need to fertilize your sage, add a skinny layer of compost or a little bit of slow-release natural fertilizer yearly in springtime to provide your vegetation a lift.
Jobe’s Organics Granular Plant Meals for Herbs is a good possibility! I’ve at all times had nice outcomes with the Jobe’s line.
(To study extra about fertilizer for container backyard vegetation, take a look at my Fertilizer 101 publish!)
Frequent pests for sage
The sturdy scent of sage is undesirable to many backyard pests, making sage naturally pest-resistant; nonetheless, there are just a few exceptions:
Spider mites are tiny white mites that type spider-like webbing over contaminated vegetation and feed on plant juices. As infestations worsen, vegetation will start to look dry, leaves will yellow and drop and vegetation could turn out to be stunted or die.
As spider mites thrive in dry situations, be sure that your sage has satisfactory humidity ranges and check out companion planting with alliums (garlic, chives, onions and leeks), dill and chrysanthemums.
To deal with an current infestation, spray your sage vegetation down with an natural insecticidal cleaning soap or neem oil spray.
Greatest companion vegetation for sage
Sage is a good companion plant for a lot of different herbs and greens resulting from its pure pest-repelling talents. Some notably nice companion plant choices embody:
- Brassicas (similar to broccoli, cauliflower, kale and cabbage). Sage naturally repels most of the pests which might be drawn to brassicas, making this an exquisite pairing for pure pest management.
- Tomatoes.Tomatoes are sometimes affected by many pests, together with flea beetles, which sage fortunately drives away.
- Rosemary. One other herb that loves arid situations, rosemary and sage share most of the similar care necessities and develop properly collectively in containers.
Whereas sage grows properly with many backyard vegetation, there are just a few species you must keep away from potting up with it:
- Cucumbers. Sage and lots of different fragrant herbs can stunt cucumbers’ progress, so attempt to maintain these vegetation away from one another.
- Basil. Basil and sage each stunt one another’s progress and don’t make good companions within the backyard.
- Rue. For varied causes, rue doesn’t develop properly with many vegetation, together with sage.
Sage rising levels
- When began from seed, sage can take as much as 6 weeks to germinate.
- Sage vegetation are able to transplant outdoor when they’re about 4” tall.
- On the whole, sage is able to harvest when it’s 75 days outdated; nonetheless, attempt to keep away from harvesting a lot throughout your plant’s first yr.
- Sage reaches maturity when it’s 2 years outdated and can flower fairly, purple blooms throughout summer time. Bees and different pollinators love sage flowers!
The best way to harvest sage
Sage could be harvested any time all year long; nonetheless, to maintain your vegetation rising sturdy, restrict your harvesting throughout the first yr of your plant’s progress.
When you’re prepared to reap, snip off as many leaves as you want, aiming for small, child leaves, which have higher taste. Sage vegetation additionally style higher earlier than they bloom, so attempt to harvest earlier than your plant flowers or snip off flower buds to increase your harvesting window.
Simply be mindful, pollinators love sage flowers and permitting your vegetation to bloom can improve pollinator exercise in your backyard. Learn my publish about easy methods to appeal to pollinators for extra concepts on methods to entice these useful associates!
If you wish to harvest bigger parts of your plant for drying, reduce off lengths of stem which might be at the very least 6 to eight” lengthy and dangle them to dry in a heat, dry location. This course of may help rejuvenate your sage vegetation too, simply be sure you go away at the very least 1/3 of the plant so it could recuperate.
The best way to retailer sage
- To retailer contemporary sage, wrap your leaves in a moist paper towel and place them in a quart- or gallon-size bag inside your crisper drawer. Saved this manner, your sage leaves will final for about 4 to five days.
- To maintain your sage contemporary as much as 3 weeks, retailer leaves in a jar of olive oil within the fridge.
- For long run storage, attempt dehydrating your sage leaves or storing them in an hermetic quart or gallon bag within the freezer.
- Try my publish about easy methods to dry herbs, for extra concepts!