Plant in the spring after all danger of frost has passed in a location that will receive full sun to partial shade. Space plants 2-4′ apart in dry to average soil that is well-drained. Plant height 4′. All of the sage varieties are drought tolerant, and a great choice for mixed pots.
During the spring and summer months it is good to use a regular liquid fertilizer or light compost mulch for optimal growth. Sage is a perennial in zone 5 and will become quite woody after a year or two so plants should be replaced every four or five years. Cut back severely in the spring before new growth appears. Attracts bees and butterflies to the garden. Deer resistant.
Sage, Garden Grey
The beautiful silvery foliage of ‘Garden Grey’ looks beautiful anywhere in the landscape! The foliage is thick and soft with a wooly appearance. Highly ornamental, this sage makes a lovely aromatic accent plant in borders or mixed container plantings. Plant in pots or containers on patios to bring indoors and place on a sunny windowsill for quick-and-easy access to the flavorful leaves during winter.
The blue sage blooms are edible with a warming punch that lingers on the palate! They can be used fresh in salads, cheese or butter spreads or as a garnish. The bracts can be a little strong, so if using them raw pinch off the bracts before using the blooms. You can do this by holding the upper hood and lower lip of the blossom closed with one hand while pinching off the bract and base with the other. They are equally delicious when dipped in a batter and fried until crispy – using this method, you can leave the bracts intact.
Sage is a warm, fragrant herb and the smell of it is likely to evoke memories of childhood and large family gatherings. It is the primary flavor in stuffing, which is traditionally prepared during Thanksgiving and Christmas. Its taste is extremely complementary to meats, poultry and sausage as it aids in digestion. Sage is delicious with dairy products as well, in sauces with eggs, butter, or cheeses. Sage is also a common ingredient in marinades.
Sage is a wonderful asset in the garden. The plant itself has a nice mounding habit when pruned properly and bears delicate flower spikes in the late spring and summer which attract bees and are beautiful in mixed bouquets.