6 Steps for Growing Sage in a Container 6 Steps for Growing Sage in a Container

Sage, like most herbs, can easily be grown in a container. Harvesting sage in a container is simple as the container can be located where it is convenient. Follow these six steps to produce healthy and happy sage plants.

Step 1: Choose the Correct Container Size

Decide if you want one plant or more than one in your container. Read the label or talk to your garden center experts to see how large your plant will grow. Common sage plants grow to 2 feet high and need a foot of space in between. Choose containers that will accommodate your plant or plants nicely without crowding and with room for roots. Make sure there is at least one drainage hole in the bottom of the container.

Step 2: Prepare the Container

Use a new container. Before use, wash the container out with mild soap and water and air- or sun-dry. If you want to use an old container, make sure it is empty and clean. Wash out any residual dirt out with mild soap, water and a brush. Rinse and air- or sun-dry. Then spray the inside and rim of the used container with a bleach-water mixture of 7 parts water to 1 part bleach and air- or sun-dry.

Step 3: Fill the Container with Good Potting Soil

You can use store-bought or homemade potting soil in your container as long as it is clean and sterile. Use a mixture that contains nutrient material to feed your plant and particles that provide good drainage and aeration. You may choose a mix that is specially made to grow vegetables. Or you may find container compost to provide nutrients that you mix with the potting soil. Fill the container with the soil to within 1½ to 2 inches of the rim.

Step 4: Plant Your Sage

Dig a hole or holes in your container to accommodate the roots. Place the plant in the hole and hold it up so that the bottom of the plant is even with the top of the soil. Make sure the roots hang down and are not bending at the bottom. Fill in the hole with the potting soil. Press down around the top of the soil to firm and settle the plant.

Step 5: Sage Plant Maintenance

Water the newly-planted sage thoroughly, slowly and deeply until water runs out the bottom of the container. Water again when the soil has dried out. If you live in a hot, dry area, water more frequently in the summer. Feed your sage twice during the growing season with a good liquid or granular fertilizer for easy application. Pinch off the flowers to promote fuller, bushier growth.

Step 6: Find a Good Location and Enjoy Your Sage

Place the container with the sage in a sunny location. Sage needs at least 4 hours of full sun a day. If you are in a dry or arid climate, you may want to place the container where its leaves won't get burned. Harvest sage when you need some for cooking or cut sprigs to release its refreshing, woodsy fragrance in your home or car.

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