Growing White Sage at Home
Though white sage is an evergreen herb that hails from the hot, dry climate of the southwestern deserts, the herb may effectively be grown in environments that cater effectively to its tropical nature. The most important factors to its growth are warmth and sunlight. Several tricks and strategies may be employed to nurture these plants in less-than-optimal conditions.
The equipment needed to take on this project includes a shovel, compost, builder’s sand, and the white sage plant that you can purchase at a local gardening store. Because white sage flourishes in the warmest of conditions, it is most advisable to choose the plant’s housing either indoors or outdoors based on that consideration. Wherever it may receive the most abundant sunlight and warmest temperatures are the ideal locale. In a garden, planting the white sage nearest a wall or solid surface will help relay warmth. Also, utilize the warmest season of the year for the best results.
Keeping the white sage as shallow as possible in its soil is a pertinent concern, anywhere between 2 and 4 inches deep is acceptable. First, however, dig a hole that is half a foot deep and wide enough to house the white sage being planted. It is advisable to keep each plant at least two feet apart. At the bottom of the hole, use a shovel to even the surface. Then, lay a thin layer of compost to facilitate the growing process. Over the compost, lay a thin layer of builder’s sand. The purpose of this layer of sand is heat retention. Sand will not only reflect light back through the white sage to the surface of the soil but will also create an ideal drainage situation for the plant to distribute its water. Watering the white sage may be done approximately once a day, with consideration of rain and other conditions. Small pebbles may be used as another layer to further enhance water drainage.
Before the white sage is planted over the sand and pebbles, however, water approximately ¼ cup into the hole and allow it to settle for 30 – 45 minutes. Fill the rest of the hole with repeated layers of compost, sand, and pebbles until the hole is approximately 2 inches deep. Then, it is appropriate to plant the white sage itself. Push the roots gently into the soil mix until its roots are concealed and only 1 inch of its root sticks out. Watering once daily is enough to ensure maximal growth; it is advisable to wait until the soil around the white sage is visibly dried out before administering another dosage of water.
Pruning is not necessary for the maintenance of the white sage, though occasionally the prudent gardener would be wisest to remove dead flower stems, as they will attract unwanted pests and disease. Standard insecticides may be utilized in keeping the white sage as healthy as possible, though one should consider a local gardening expert regarding specific soil and plant conditions to choose the best product.