Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sage in Bloom

I have a good-sized clump of common (or garden) sage, Salvia officinalis, in my garden that flowered quite impressively recently. It's part of the same genus as ornamental salvia that you might buy at a garden center; the genus is part of the mint family and includes hundreds of species, which cover the spectrum from annual to biennial to perennial.

Common sage is a perennial, but I was surprised to discover other herbs well established in my garden recently, including parsley, cilantro and dill. I have not paid sufficient attention to my garden this year. We joined a CSA so I'm not growing much for our own eating pleasure, and it's been so very wet that I haven't done much working with the soil.

The surprise parsley (visible behind the sage flowers in this photo, and which was so thick and mature I think it must be last year's plant in the second year of its biennial cycle, protected by our heavy snow blanket this past year) and cilantro have already flowered. Herbs tend to be more coarse and bitter once they have flowered and gone to seed, so maybe I'll think of this overlooked patch as next year's plants in production.

I do also have a nice little clump of lemon thyme, which I imagine would work well with roast chicken but never really did anything with last year (I am notoriously bad at actually using the herbs I grow.). Does anyone else grow this and have suggestions for its use?

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1 comment:

Mary S. said...

I have the exact same sage, also flowering very prettily this week. I pulled some leaves recently to flavor a chicken that I braised in a dutch oven. It was tasty! Except for basil, I never use all the herbs I grow.