Category Archives: sage

Harvesting Herbs In the Off Season

Besides growing herbs indoors I have been able to harvest some of the herbs from my garden throughout much of the winter.

For Christmas this year I made an herb cream cheese spread from fresh parsley, green onion tops, orange mint, and sage.  If you have no or light snow cover it is easy to see which herbs look green.  Otherwise you will have to carefully uncover a few herbs and see what you can find.  My parsley is green all winter.   For younger or smaller herb plants harvest with care.  If you harvest too much you may damage or kill the plant.  My sage is large and well established, I have many parsley plants, the green onions are plentiful as well as the orange mint.  I would not recommend harvesting rosemary over winter unless you are growing it indoors or live in a zone 7 or warmer climate.

Sage

Sage

Sage (Salvia officinalis) is probably best known as the herb for stuffing.  In addition to stuffing, sage is great in pasta sauce, sausages, breads, and with vegetable such as carrots.

Sage is also attracts bees to its beautiful blue flowers.  In addition to the typical sage as pictured above, sage also comes in other varieties and colors including Golden – with leaves splashed with golden yellow, Purple – leaves of purple and green, and Tricolor – leaves of white, green, and purple.  The relative, Pineapple Sage Salvia elegans, is a tender perennial which I grow in a pot and bring inside over winter.  As the name suggests, the leaves have a pineapple scent and flavor.   Other than Pineapple Sage, the sages mentioned are drought tolerant.

Golden Sage

Golden, Tricolor, and Purple Sage all have the same scent and flavor as typical culinary sage.  Planting them can add more diversity to the landscape.  The leaves can be used as a garnish or to add color to appetizers.

Purple Sage

Tricolor Sage

 

Writing A Book

Sorry I have not posted for awhile.  I have been finishing an herb book which is now available for Kindle and hopefully soon for Nook.

Check out What About Herbs? and let me know what you think.

Please pass the link for the book for those you know who may be interested. Thanks!

Herb Garden Planning

Now is a great time to plan which herbs you would like to grow.  Making a list now will reduce the chance of you purchasing something you have not prepared a place for and the chance of buying something you won’t be able to care for or find a spot to grow.

What herbs do you use now in cooking, for crafts, or for other purposes?  I would recommend starting with a few you are already somewhat familiar with even if you have only used them dried.  Chives, parsley, mint (if grown in a container), sage, lavender, tarragon, thyme, and oregano are some that are usually easy to find and grow. 

Once you have a list check to see if they will grow in your area by researching the herbs and finding what climate zone you are in.

Even if you can’t grow an herb outside in your area you may still be able to grow it indoors.  I grow several herbs in pots that would not survive the winter in my yard.  I can still enjoy them and have some houseplants to eat over the winter.

Thanksgiving Recipes Using Herbs

The Herb Companion Magazine has several Thanksgiving recipes including Cornbread Sage Dressing and Whole Roasted Salmon with Fennel & Rosemary.
Check them out here.

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