Sage

Nutritious annual green with Culinary and Medicinal Benefits

Nutritional, Culinary & Medicinal Uses

Culinary: Sage can be used to season dishes, such as ones that contain chicken or sausage. They also help in flavoring root vegetables and pasta. Another classic use for this herb is in stews and soups [3].

Nutritional Benefits: Sage contains antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic, antiseptic and antioxidant properties. It also possesses alkaloids, carbohydrates, and fatty acids. It further aids with metabolic activities [5].

Medicinal Uses: Sage can aid with sore throats, stimulate blood circulation to the scalp to encourage hair growth, and balance hormones in men and women [4].

How to Cultivate and Harvest

Planting: Plant sage in spring or fall, ideally with well-draining soil and lots of sunlight. Don’t plant near cucumbers. Plant 2 feet apart in full sun. Plant in sandy or loamy soil with good drainage. Keep soil evenly moist Plant about two weeks before the last frost [2].

Harvesting: After about 75 days, harvest minimally the first year. Harvest before the plant flowers. Stop harvesting two months before the fall frost. Pick off leaves or trim sprigs, but no more than one third of the plant at one time [2]. 

Preservation

For fresh use, store in refrigerator for 2-3 days; for longer use, dry upside down in a cool, dark, well-ventilated spot until brittle or just use a dryer and heat at 95F. We did the latter [2].

History

Sage, known for its practical benefits, was considered by the ancient Romans to help with digestion of meats and the healing of ulcers. Then, sage was in the early medieval period grown in France for tea. When the Chinese received the imported French sage, they traded very highly for it. Charlemagne deemed it ought to be planted in farms in Germany for its trade value [1].

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References

1. Filippone, Peggy Trowbridge. “Sage History, Uses, and Recipes.” 29 March 2021, https://www.thespruceeats.com/history-of-sage-1807657

2. “How to Grow Sage Plants: The Complete Guide”. The Old Farmer’s Almanac, 7 March 2024, https://www.almanac.com/plant/sage

3. Staff Writers. “About Sage Herb Uses, Pairings and Recipes.” McCormick, https://www.mccormick.com/articles/mccormick/about-sage-herb#:~:text=You%20can%20use%20it%20as,soups%2C%20stews%2C%20and%20casseroles.

4. Apelian, Nicole. Davis, Claude. The Lost Book of Herbal Remedies, Claude Davis, 2020.

5. Ghorbani, Ahmad and Esmaeilizadeh, Mahdi. “Pharmacoological Properties of Salvia officinalis and its components”. Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, October 2017, Volume 7, Issue 4, pg. 433-440 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2225411017300056?via%3Dihub

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