Salvia Sclarea or Clary Sage, is a biennial or perennial flower in the sage family. It is considered sacred in Islam but is commonly grown in flower gardens around the U.S. and Europe. Grown in zones 3-10, this aromatic ornamental has dense spikes of pale pink to pale blue flowers. Clary sage enjoys full sun and can grow as tall as 3 feet. The essential oil is used in making perfumes and to flavor liquors and wine. The oil and leaves of this sage, like those of common sage, are also used in cooking. Clary sage is said to be high in Omega-3, similar to flax seed oil. However, clary sage lacks the same phytoestrogens that many people look to avoid in flax seed oil. Flax can also work as a laxative, which may be a turnoff for some, making clary sage oil a better alternative. It has also been used as a weight loss supplement to activate enzymes that move fat out of cells.
Growing Information: The seeds should be sown very shallowly in a fertile well-draining mix. An alkaline to neutral ph is preferred. This species can have erratic germination, but germination will generally begin in 1-3 weeks. Optimal germination temperature is about 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit. The seeds can be started indoors or outdoors in the spring. You may also choose to winter sow the seeds by placing them out in the fall to germinate naturally when the weather warms. This species makes a great border plant, and should be placed in full sun. Salvia sclarea has average watering needs.
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