Aromatic purple leaves, prized by cooks for their culinary uses, are a feature through the year.
The beautiful leaves of Purple Sage will add a splash of colour to any sunny spot in the garden and this highly ornamental herb is a must-have for even the smallest of herb gardens. The fresh new leaves begin as deep reddish purple and mature to dusky purple-green - a lovely contrast to the spikes of purple-blue flowers that stand above the leaves in summer, attracting plenty of bees and other pollinating insects. In the kitchen the leaves are a favourite for stuffings in pork and poultry dishes as well as adding their robust flavour to herb breads and cheese dishes. No room in your garden? Purple Sage is a first class container plant to grow in a sunny place so that you will always have fresh leaves on hand.
Low mounds of aromatic leaves and summer flowers make this essential herb a focal point through the summer months.
Plant pot for display purposes only.
Plant Type: Herb
Hardiness: H4 Hardy. Minimum temperature -10 to -5
Plant Height & Spread (at maturity): 60cm x 60cm (Mature age: 2 years)
Foliage Colour: Green, Purple
Flower Colour: Blue, Purple
Fragrant Flower: No
Aromatic Foliage: Yes
RHS Award of Garden Merit: Yes
RHS Perfect for Pollinators: Yes
Foliage Type: Semi-Evergreen
Soil Type: Acid, Alkaline, Chalky, Loam, Sandy
Soil Drainage: Well drained
Light Exposure: Full Sun
Planting Style: Cottage Garden, Informal Garden, Flower Beds & Borders, Border Edging, Urban Garden, Courtyard Garden, Coastal Garden, Gravel and Drought Resistant Garden, Wildlife Garden
Season of Interest: Summer
Flowering (from - to): June, August
Harvesting Instructions: Sage leaves can be used fresh through the growing season and the young, soft growth on the ends of the branches has the best flavour. Simply snip off the shoots or pull off individual leaves as they are needed in the kitchen. Sage leaves also dry very easily, ensuring that you will never be without their warming, robust flavours even in the depths of winter. Snip some of the newest leaves from your plant in late summer and lay them on a rack in a warm room or airing cupboard for a couple of weeks until they crumble between your fingers. They can then be stored in an airtight container until needed.
Like most Mediterranean herbs, sage needs sun to do its best and prefers to live hard. Give it a well-drained soil and go easy on the watering and it will be happy. An ideal plant for gardens with poor soil. If you get lots of floppy growth you'll know you're being too nice! Don't bother feeding it, unless it's in a container and has been there more than a year. Harvesting the shoot tips regularly is the best way to prune sage - the idea is to prevent it from becoming leggy - keep it as a nice mounded bush. By removing the tips you'll help keep it bushy. Don't cut back into old, leafless wood with no leaves, as the plant will struggle to regenerate. However, it's worth growing a few extra plants and leaving them un-pruned as they'll flower better, giving you and the bees something wonderful to enjoy in June.