Growing Sage from seed can take quite a while initially, however, once established it is hardy and will grow in most soil types as long as it has plenty of sun for most of the day and does not become too moist, it prefers to be too dry than too wet. Sage is an evergreen perennial shrub with grayish leaves and spikes of blue/purple flowers, although there are over 750 different varieties.
For common sage sow the seeds indoors in March in standard potting compost or directly into the ground in April. The plants are very slow growing and you will need to harvest lightly in the first year and it will be June the following year before you can start to fully harvest.
Sage plants can be brought from garden a center, which is the most efficient way of growing sage, but make sure all frosts have passed before planting them outside. If you are growing more than one plant you will need to space the others about 75cm apart to allow sufficient room for growth as sage has a tendency to sprawl.
You will need to put a strong support about 90cm high near the main stem, although sage is pretty hardy any strong wind is liable to snap it. As the plant grows tie the plant to the support. If you plant sage in the spring you be able to harvest some of the leaves by July. It ensures better chances of success when you dig in bone meal to the surrounding soil at the start and the end of the summer.
After 3 or 4 years sage tends to lose some of its strength, so by taking cuttings in spring you will be able to grow new plants for free to replace them. Once the flowers have died off prune the plant to about half its original size.
To harvest, simply pick the leaves with your fingers or cut them off with scissors, although sage reacts to metal so fingers are best, in the spring and summer. If you harvest sage during the winter you stand a chance of damaging the plant. Sage is able to withstand most winters, but if the plants are young it is advisable to cover them with a cloche or straw during the winter.
Growing Sage in containers is easy and it will also grow indoors if given enough light and is not over watered. Sage is one of the few plants that can withstand direct sunlight so it is ideal for placing on a sunny windowsill.