Sage (Salvia Officinalis) is a common garden plant with good fragrance. Sage grows into a small woody shrub of about three feet (one meter) in height. The leaves of the most common variety of sage shrubs are green and light purple in color. They are also known to have deep purple- or soft yellow-colored leaves. This plant can be easily grown in the garden with very little plant care.
The constituents of sage oil (chemical substances such as alpha and beta-thujone, camphor, cineole, rosmarinic acid, tannins, and flavonoids) bestow antibacterial and antifungal properties on the herb. Sage leaves are also used to relieve sprains, swellings, ulcers, and bleeding. Sage leaf tea has a soothing effect on sore throats and coughs.
Avoid growing these herbs in acidic soil. It is important to remember that for it to grow well, sage requires well-drained soil mixed with organic matter. It is important to expose these plants to at least six hours of good sunlight.
Sage plants can be grown from seeds, root cuttings, or transplants. They can be grown in pots or containers. They can even be grown indoors, but only in an area that receives ample sunlight. Pruning is very important for the healthy growth of the plant. Below are some useful tips for pruning sage:
Frequent harvesting and pruning of these herbs reinvigorates them. Pruning is important to maintain the appearance of the sage plant and prevents it from becoming too woody. However, this is to be done carefully in order to avoid any damage to the plant.
Right Time for Pruning
Prune the sage plants after the flowering stage. After the flowers die down, prune the sage to half its size. Do not forget to remove all the deadwoods before pruning. Prune during early spring, and avoid pruning the plant in the late fall.
Remove All the Diseased and Overgrown Branches
Never prune downwards of the stem below the level of the leaves. Trim crossed, weak, or diseased branches. Excess straight shoots grown as a result of previous pruning have to be pruned down to two-thirds of their length.
Prune the Leaves Before the Plant Grows Considerably Tall
Do not pluck the leaves before the plant reaches a height of eight inches. Use good by-pass pruning equipment for the job.
Move the Plants to a New Area if They Grow Too Large
Pruning and shaping herbs increases the attractiveness of the plant. In particular, pruning helps you easily keep the plant in shape and to help it grow without any health issues. Pruning also controls the growth of the plant. In the case of the sage plant, if the shrub becomes too large for its planted place, it is better to transplant than to prune. Pruning the herbs also stimulates their growth. So, after shaping herbs, you may consider moving them to a larger area.
Harvest at the Right Time
Harvest lightly the first year, and as the plant becomes established, harvest individual leaves as needed. Leaves can be used fresh or be dried and stored for future use. The sage plant is a very useful shrub and is easy to grow in kitchen gardens.
You're now equipped with the knowhow to keep your sage growing and healthy. Enjoy your bountiful harvest and delicious aroma!