Sage (Salvia) officinalis and clary: growing in the garden

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Plant type: perennial or annual.

Description: This is a group of hardy and graceful plants. In total, there are about 900 species in the genus. In the wild, they have been found in South America, southern Europe, North Africa and North America. They belong to the mint family. This name was taken from the word salveo, to preserve, and it is associated with the medicinal value that this plant was believed to have. In height, these flowers reach from 30 to 90 cm, and they form branchy thickets.

  • Origin: Brazil.
  • Foliage: This flower has oval or lanceolate leaves 5 to 10 cm long.
  • Care: easy.
  • Lighting: full sun.

Sage – cultivation

Soil Type: Sage, which is easy to grow, should be planted in well-drained, moist soil. Hardy species can be planted in loam. To make the soil more suitable, it needs to be dug deep and mixed with a lot of organic matter such as manure, compost or humus, and you can also add a little sand and coal residue.

The flowering period of medicinal sage in the photo.

Flowering: sage, whose flowers are like ears, grow above the foliage. The length of the ears can be from 5 to 15 cm. The shade of flowers can be white or blue, and varieties with all tones of red, purple, pink or purple are also known.

Watering: Sage should only be watered regularly for a few weeks after planting in the garden. This plant is drought tolerant. After it is accepted, it should be watered only when the flower shows signs of lethargy.

Reproduction: carried out by planting seeds or division. After it is accepted, it should be watered only when the flower shows signs of lethargy. Until they germinate, they must be kept in complete darkness. You can plant them outside in 8-10 weeks. Sage can also be started outdoors in warm soil. Brilliant sage, for example, can be propagated by cuttings in late summer or autumn. They are planted in a bed of sand or vermiculite in a greenhouse. Keep them out of direct sunlight and water them by spraying. Once they have roots, they can be planted separately in different pots of porous soil and kept in a greenhouse during the winter. When they reach a height of 7 to 12 cm, cut them back, making them prone to branching. Hardy species can be propagated by dividing the roots in October or early spring, by cuttings in early summer, or by planting seeds.

Diseases and pests: In general, the plant is not very susceptible to any diseases or pests. These flowers can suffer from stem or root rot, as well as from powdery mildew. This can happen especially often in damp, cool conditions.

Application: You can cut and dry whole flowering stems of mature plants for decorative purposes. Garden sage looks good in borders and containers. Also, the flower is often used for cutting. These plants attract butterflies and hummingbirds. Thus, the main areas of application of sage are cooking, medicine and decorative use. For example, meadow sage is often used for medical purposes.

Additionally: it is better not to disturb the sage unless necessary, because after transplantation, these plants recover for a long time. Perennial varieties should be pruned in late autumn, when flowering ends. Due to this approach, a strong root system will begin to form in the plant.

Salvia officinalis – Salvia officinalis

This species should be grown in full sun, in well-drained soil. It is relatively easy to grow and can be planted after frost has passed.

Harvest when Salvia officinalis is in bloom, but before flower sprouts have formed. Take the shoots of the stem with a few leaves. Cut them off in the morning, after the morning dew has dried, but before the heat of the day sets in. After cutting, the plant will recover. A fresh flower smells better than a dried one. It can be used with cheese, eggs or vegetable dishes.

Clary sage – Salvia sclarea

This species has a long history of medicinal use and is also cultivated for essential oils. Clary sage reaches a height of 30 to 40 cm. This plant is biennial. Found in the northern regions of the Mediterranean, as well as in North Africa and Central Asia.

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Tuesday, October 3, 2023