Golden Sage Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
common sage 'Kew Gold'


Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold', commonly known as golden sage, is a visually striking plant that boasts a unique appearance compared to its traditional sage counterparts. This cultivar is distinguished by its vibrant golden-yellow leaves that add a pop of color to any herb garden or landscape. The foliage is a prominent feature, with leaves that exhibit a textured surface, characterized by a slightly wrinkled or crinkled appearance that adds depth to the plant's visual appeal. The golden sage maintains a bushy and dense growth habit, displaying the classic sage leaf shape—oblong and somewhat narrow. The leaves are typically edged with a softer texture, often described as being somewhat velvety to the touch. This softer leaf texture contrasts with the firm and slightly woody stems, which support the leaves and add to the overall robustness of the plant. Another characteristic of the golden sage's appearance is its flowering habit. It produces spikes of flowers that project above the foliage, and while the individual blossoms can be quite small, they usually appear in abundance. The flowers tend to be of a subtle color, often leaning towards blue or purple, and can provide an attractive contrast to the golden-yellow leaves, creating a picturesque combination that is both aesthetically pleasing and attractive to pollinators such as bees. In summary, golden sage provides a striking visual display with its golden-yellow foliage, dense bushy habit, velvety leaf texture, firm stems, and delicate flowers which, combined, create a plant that is not only beautiful but practical for culinary use. Its unique coloring makes it a valuable addition to any garden for ornamental purposes or as part of a functional herb garden.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Golden Sage, Kew Gold Sage

    • Common names

      Salvia officinalis.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Sage, including Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold', is generally considered non-toxic to humans and is commonly used as an herb in culinary practices. However, consuming sage in extremely large quantities may lead to adverse effects due to a compound called thujone. Symptoms of sage poisoning could include vomiting, dizziness, rapid heart rate, restlessness, or seizures in severe instances. It is important to consume sage in moderation.

    • To pets

      Sage, including Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold', is generally considered safe for pets in small, culinary amounts. However, if a pet consumes large amounts of sage, it can potentially experience mild gastrointestinal upset. Symptoms of this might include vomiting or diarrhea. It is important to ensure that pets do not ingest large quantities of any plant, including sage.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Spread

      2 feet (0.61 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Culinary Uses: The leaves of Sage (Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold') are often used to flavor meats, sauces, and stuffings.
    • Aromatic Foliage: Sage has a strong, pleasant aroma that can be used to freshen up the air naturally through its foliage.
    • Attracts Pollinators: Sage flowers attract bees, butterflies, and other beneficial pollinators to the garden.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, Sage is quite drought-tolerant, making it a sustainable choice for low-water gardens.
    • Decorative Qualities: The ‘Kew Gold’ variety has attractive golden-yellow foliage that provides ornamental value to the garden.
    • Culinary Variety: It offers a unique flavor profile in culinary arts different from common sage due to its specific cultivar characteristics.
    • Easy to Grow: Sage is generally easy to grow and can be maintained with minimal effort in a variety of climates and soil types.
    • Herb Garden Addition: It is a staple herb in many gardens and offers a great addition to a home herb garden for fresh culinary use.
    • Companion Planting: Sage can be used in companion planting to help deter some pests from other plants in the garden.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Antimicrobial: Salvia officinalis contains substances that can inhibit the growth of bacteria, fungi, and viruses.
    • Anti-inflammatory: It has compounds that may reduce inflammation in the body.
    • Antioxidant: The plant is high in antioxidants, which can protect the body from oxidative stress and free radicals.
    • Memory Enhancement: Some studies suggest that Sage may benefit cognitive function and memory.
    • Anti-diabetic: There is evidence that Sage may help to lower blood glucose levels.
    • Gastrointestinal Relief: Sage tea has traditionally been used to relieve digestive problems.
    Please consult appropriate medical professionals before using plants for medicinal purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • As a natural dye: The leaves of sage can be used to produce a yellow or green dye for coloring textiles.
    • In crafting potpourri: Sage's aromatic leaves can be included in potpourri mixes for a long-lasting fragrance in your home.
    • As an ornamental plant: With its attractive gold-colored foliage, 'Kew Gold' sage can be grown purely for aesthetic purposes in gardens and landscapes.
    • In companion planting: Sage is believed to repel some pests and can be planted alongside vegetables to help protect them.
    • For flavoring homemade soaps: The aromatic properties of sage can be infused into homemade soap recipes for a natural herbal scent.
    • In meat preservation: Historically, sage has been used in salt mixtures for preserving meats due to its strong aroma and purported antibacterial properties.
    • To enhance compost: Sage leaves add a valuable component to compost heaps, contributing to a more nutrient-rich compost.
    • In aromatherapy: Dried sage leaves or essential oil can be used for aromatherapy to create a calming environment.
    • As a metal tarnish remover: Sage leaves can be rubbed on tarnished silver or other metals as a natural polish.
    • In ceremonial practices: Sage is often burned in various traditional and spiritual ceremonies around the world for its aromatic smoke.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Sage plant is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Sage plant is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Wisdom: Derived from the Latin name Salvia, which is related to the word 'sage', often connected to wisdom and experience.
    • Longevity: Salvia officinalis, commonly known as 'sage', has been associated with a long life, partly because of its evergreen nature and health benefits attributed to it.
    • Protection: Sage has roots in folklore as a plant that offers protection against evil and is often used in rituals to cleanse and protect spaces.
    • Healing: Historically, sage has been used for its medicinal properties, symbolizing health and healing.

Every 1-2 weeks
10000 - 20000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring to Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Sage 'Kew Gold' should be watered deeply and infrequently to mimic natural conditions. This variety prefers to dry out slightly between waterings, meaning you may water every 1 to 2 weeks, depending on the climate and soil drainage. Thoroughly soak the soil until water runs out of the bottom of the pot if container-grown, or wet the soil to a depth of about 8 inches for in-ground plants. During the active growing season, spring and summer, you might water with 1 to 2 gallons, depending on the size of the plant and evaporation rates. Reduce watering frequency in the fall and even more so in winter when plant growth slows down.

  • sunLight

    Sage 'Kew Gold' thrives in full sun, which means at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily. A south-facing position is ideal for this plant, providing the intense light conditions it needs to develop its best flavor and most vigorous growth. Partial shade is also tolerable, especially in hotter climates where the afternoon sun can be particularly intense.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Sage 'Kew Gold' prefers a temperate range, thriving ideally between 60°F and 70°F. However, it is quite hardy and can tolerate minimum temperatures down to about 15°F. For maximum growth and health, avoid exposing sage to temperatures above 85°F for prolonged periods.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune Sage 'Kew Gold' to encourage bushiness and prevent woody growth. Pruning is best done in spring as new growth appears. Remove up to one-third of the previous year's growth. Additionally, after flowering, cut back flower stalks to maintain plant shape and size. Pruning every year promotes healthier and more productive plants.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The best soil mix for Sage 'Kew Gold' is well-draining with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0. A mix of garden soil, coarse sand and compost is ideal to provide the necessary drainage and nutrients.

  • plantRepotting

    Sage 'Kew Gold' should generally be repotted every 1 to 2 years, or when it outgrows its current pot. This will ensure healthy growth and prevent root-bound conditions.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Sage 'Kew Gold' is adapted to dry climates and prefers low to moderate humidity levels, avoiding excessively moist environments to prevent fungal diseases.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Sage 'Kew Gold' in bright light, water sparingly.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Sage 'Kew Gold' in full sun, well-drained soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    'Kew Gold' sage, a cultivar of Salvia officinalis, starts its life cycle with seed germination, usually in early spring or after stratification if in colder climates. After germination, the plant enters the vegetative stage, developing a rosette of leaves and then an upright stem with characteristic grayish-green, aromatic foliage. As it matures, 'Kew Gold' sage will typically begin to flower in late spring or early summer, producing spikes of pale yellow blossoms that are attractive to bees and other pollinators. Following the flowering stage, the plant will set seeds, completing its reproductive cycle. If conditions are favorable, 'Kew Gold' sage can become a perennial, surviving through multiple seasons, during which it enters a dormancy period in the winter, especially in colder regions. Throughout its life, the plant can be harvested for its leaves, which are used for culinary and medicinal purposes.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Summer

    • The most popular method of propagation for Salvia officinalis 'Kew Gold', commonly known as golden sage, is by semi-hardwood cuttings. This is typically done in late summer. To propagate by cuttings, a gardener would select healthy, non-flowering stems and cut a 4 to 6 inch (approximately 10 to 15 cm) length, stripping the leaves from the lower half of the cutting. The cut end is then dipped in rooting hormone and planted in a well-draining soil mix or in a container. The cutting should be kept moist and in indirect light until roots have developed, which usually takes a few weeks. It's important to maintain a high humidity around the cutting during this initial rooting period, often by placing a plastic bag or dome over the container to create a mini greenhouse effect. Once rooted, the new sage plants can be gradually acclimated to less humid conditions and eventually planted out in the garden or into larger pots.