When it comes to growing fresh herbs around the house, we truly do believe that you can never have too many growing. This week, our herbal spotlight is on one of our all-time favorites, sage!
Sage is a beautiful herb that has a strong aroma, and a warm, earthy flavor that we just can’t get enough of. Just mentioning sage brings back memories of Thanksgiving dinners with sage and sausage stuffing or sage and bourbon cocktails. and On top of being great for your cooking and living decor needs, sage also has plentiful health benefits – what more could you ask for?
Keep reading to learn why we love sage oh so much, and why you should start growing your own today.
The History of Sage
Sage is a member of the mint family, and formally is known by the name Salvia Officinalis, which translates to “to save”. With over 900 varieties of the herb, about 2 million ounces of sage are sold in the US each year. The plant is known for having fragrant flowers and an early, slightly spicy flavor.
Historically, sage has been used as a healing herb, ailing things such as snake bites, intoxication, and infection. At one point in history, sage was believed to have the power to stimulate the brain and increase concentration, memory, and reasoning.
As a result of this belief, the word sage also came to represent someone who had great knowledge, or a “wise person”.
Sage is a great addition to your herb garden at any point in the year. Since this herb grows well within a wide range of temperatures, it is can boost a long growing season. Sage is evergreen in most areas and can be harvested late into the fall. Even after the first freeze, Sage will still be thriving.
This earthy and bold herb grows beautifully with rosemary, cabbage, and carrots as well as fennel, lavender, lemon balm, lemon thyme, lemon verbena, oregano, parsley, and savory thyme.
Grow Pro Tip: If you are moving your container garden of sage indoors during the winer make sure you place it near a sunny window. A sunny window with great light is a good start but may not be enough light for your sage to flourish so adding supplemental lighting may be necessary. 6-8 hours of sun is what makes sage grow well.
This herb isn’t too high-maintenance; sage is fairly drought tolerant, so be sure not to overwater your sage garden. Even when the leaves look wilted, a little hydration perks the entire plant up.
For more information, take a look at our complete guide to growing sage for your sage container garden.
Sage can be harvested as needed and we recommend harvesting sage in the morning when the richest concentration of their aromatic oils are fresh. Harvest sage just above the spot where two leaves meet.
Sage can also be harvested as needed – one of the great things about this lovely herb is that it’s one of the few herbs that doesn’t lose its potency after flowering.
Health Benefits of Sage
Sage is traditionally known for its healing components. In modern-day medicine, sage is recognized for its ability to help with inflammation, as well as having abundant antioxidant properties.
Below is a list of health benefits that result from adding sage into your regular eating habits:
- High in Vitamin K
- High in antioxidants
- Contains over 160 polyphenols
- Reduces blood sugar
- Supports oral health
- Can reduce the symptoms of menopause
- Can support memory and good brain health
- According to Medical News Today, sage may even help ward off cognitive diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease.
- Controls inflammation
Cooking & Cocktails with Sage
Sage is a staple in the kitchen, and is a great way to add flavor to your meals when used fresh or dried. This herb is commonly used as a way to flavor sausage, poultry and pork.
Sage’s flavor is described as sharp, yet still warm. This herb has an earthy taste, which greatly complements sweet or acidic flavors; sage is a great choice alongside fruits like blackberries or infused into simple syrups for cocktails. As a rule of thumb, if you’re looking to soften the flavor of sage, simply cook it!
If you’re looking for a way to spice up your mixed drink menu, look no further. Try this fizzy Grapefruit & Sage Champagne Cocktail.
Sage is the perfect herb to add to your home this fall – if only for the fantastic aroma and beautiful, soft-green color it will add to your decor. Take a look at our sage container garden to learn how you can bring sage home today.
To learn more fun facts about sage, take a look at this article on 4 Reasons We are All About Sage. You’ll be pleased to find a delicious recipe at the bottom of the page – don’t miss out!