How to Grow White Sage in Maryland


The mid-Atlantic climate of Maryland is cool enough that white sage is grown either primarily as a garden annual or in containers as a perennial that is over-wintered indoors.White sage, known botanically as Salvia apiana, is cold hardy is USDA Zone 8 or higher, while most counties in Maryland are in the USDA Zones 6 or 7. Maryland does have a long enough growing season so that white sage can flourish outdoors until frost hits in the fall. Like most herbs, Salvia apiana is low maintenance and can tolerate a wide range of soil conditions and still thrive. Of the many sage cultivars this one is grown primarily for uses related to Native American traditional practices and scenting topically applied products, not for cooking.

Step 1

Plant white sage as an annual in beds and borders in full sun locations and well-drained soil. Allow the soil to dry out down 2 inches before watering and don't allow the soil to stay wet for any extended period of time.

Step 2

Fertilize only with a topdressing of compost around the plant roots and refrain from using chemical fertilizers as they are not needed to grow robust herb plants.

Step 3

Cut the dying top foliage of the plant back to the crown after the first hard frost in fall and compost the tops. Where the plant has gone to seed and self sown new plants will likely grow next year.

Step 4

Grow white sage as a perennial by planting it in containers with light potting soil and placing it outside in a full sun location in the late spring after the last threat of frost has passed.

Step 5

Move the containers indoors to a brightly lit location in the early fall before the first frost occurs. Keep the soil just barely moist an inch or so down and don't over-water as it will cause rot.

Things You'll Need

  • Compost
  • Secateurs or shears
  • Potting soil
  • Containers


  • Kentucky State University: A Growers Guide to White Sage
  • The Green Man: Sage Advice About Salvia
  • United States National Arboretum: USDA Hardiness Zone Map
Keywords: white sage, salvia apiana, growing sage in Maryland

About this Author

An omni-curious communications professional, Dena Kane has more than 17 years of experience writing and editing content for online publications, corporate communications, business clients, industry journals, as well as film and broadcast media. Kane studied political science at the University of California, San Diego.