Clary Sage Salvia sclarea var. turkestaniana 'Vatican Pink'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Turkestan clary 'Vatican Pink'


Vatican Pink, also known as Clary Sage, is an ornamental plant with a striking appearance. Its foliage is comprised of large, heart-shaped leaves that possess a velvety texture. These leaves are often a soft, lush green that set a calming tone for the garden. The signature feature of the Vatican Pink variety is its blooms. The flowers appear in showy whorls which stack in tall columns; they are a soft pink hue that exudes a sense of tranquility and subtly draws the eye. In contrast to the delicate flowers, the plant's sturdy square stems give it a robust presence in the landscape. The blooms are also noted for their aromatic qualities, with a fragrance that can be quite pleasant and herby. These attractive plant features make Vatican Pink an appealing choice for gardeners seeking to add gentle color and texture to their garden spaces.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Clary Sage, Vatican Pink, Turkish Clary, Pink Sclary Sage.

    • Common names

      Salvia sclarea var. turkestanica 'Vatican Pink'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) is generally considered non-toxic to humans. It does not typically cause serious poisoning when ingested. However, as with any plant, individuals may have different sensitivities or allergic reactions. The ingestion of large amounts of clary sage could potentially cause mild stomach upset, nausea, or vomiting. If you suspect poisoning or experience severe symptoms from clary sage, it is important to seek medical attention promptly.

    • To pets

      Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) is generally regarded as safe for pets, with no significant toxic effects reported for dogs and cats. However, individual animals may have sensitivities and reactions can vary. Ingestion of significant amounts might lead to mild gastrointestinal upset. If you notice any signs of illness in your pet after ingestion, it is always best to consult with your veterinarian.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      2-3 feet (60-91 cm)

    • Spread

      1-2 feet (30-60 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic appeal: Salvia sclarea 'Vatican Pink', commonly known as Clary sage, features striking pink flowers that add color and visual interest to gardens.
    • Attracts pollinators: Clary sage is known to attract beneficial insects like bees and butterflies, aiding in pollination and supporting biodiversity.
    • Drought tolerance: Once established, Clary sage is relatively drought resistant, making it a good choice for waterwise gardens and xeriscaping.
    • Herbal uses: While medicinal uses are excluded, Clary sage is still widely used in culinary and herbal practices for flavoring and aromatic qualities.
    • Easy to grow: Clary sage is known for being easy to cultivate, requiring minimal maintenance, which is great for both novice and experienced gardeners.
    • Deer resistance: Clary sage is less palatable to deer, reducing the likelihood of damage in areas where deer are a common gardening challenge.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Anxiolytic: Clary sage is believed to help relieve anxiety and stress due to its calming effects.
    • Antidepressant: It may also have uplifting properties that can help alleviate depression.
    • Antispasmodic: The plant has been used to relieve muscle spasms and cramps.
    • Estrogenic: Clary sage contains natural phytoestrogens, which may help to balance hormone levels and alleviate symptoms of menopause and menstrual discomfort.
    • Antibacterial: The essential oil of clary sage has shown antibacterial properties in some studies.
    • Astringent: It has been used for its astringent properties to help tighten and tone the skin.
    • Carminative: Clary sage is sometimes used to help relieve digestive issues such as gas and bloating.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' is used in perfumery for its aromatic, musky fragrance, often lending a complex base note to sophisticated scent compositions.
    • In aromatherapy, the essential oil of Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' is utilized for its calming and stress-relieving properties in creating a serene atmosphere.
    • The plant can be used as a natural dye, imparting delicate shades of pink or brown depending on the mordant used in the dyeing process.
    • As an ornamental, Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' adds a splash of color to floral arrangements and dried bouquets with its attractive pink blooms.
    • The plant is sometimes included in companion planting strategies, reportedly helping to enhance the growth and flavor of nearby plants.
    • Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' leaves can be steeped to make a fragrant tea, which is sometimes used for relaxation.
    • The dense foliage of Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' can provide shelter for beneficial insects and small wildlife in garden ecosystems.
    • In artistic mediums, Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' is sometimes used as a natural source of inspiration or as a subject in botanical illustrations and garden photography.
    • Gardeners use the dramatic stalks of the plant as architectural elements in landscape design, creating height and visual interest in mixed borders.
    • The seeds of Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' are sometimes used in homemade potpourri for their fragrance and decorative qualities when dried.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Clary Sage is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Clary Sage is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Wisdom: The genus Salvia derives from the Latin word "salvere" which means "to save" or "to heal," associating the plant with wisdom and the search for truth.
    • Protection: Salvia has been used in various cultures for its believed properties to ward off evil and protect against negativity.
    • Healing: It is often associated with healing properties, both physical and spiritual, as some Salvias have medicinal uses.
    • Longevity: Due to their hardy nature and perennial growth in some climates, Salvias can symbolize immortality and long life.
    • Purity: The clean, aromatic scent of Salvias is frequently associated with cleanliness and purity.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring to Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' prefers to be watered deeply and then allowed to dry out slightly between waterings. Water every 7 to 10 days, providing about 1 gallon of water for outdoor plants and one to two cups for smaller indoor plants per watering session. Ensure that the water penetrates the soil to reach the root zone, avoiding shallow watering which encourages weak root systems. Adjust the frequency based on weather conditions; more frequent watering during hot, dry spells and less during cool, rainy periods. Keep an eye on the soil moisture level to avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot.

  • sunLight

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' thrives best in full sun to partial shade. Ideal placement is in a spot where it can receive at least 6 hours of sunlight daily, but it can tolerate some light afternoon shade. Avoid deep shade locations as these will diminish the plant's vigor and flowering potential.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' is a hardy plant that can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, but it performs best in a temperate climate. Ideal growing temperatures range from 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. It can withstand brief periods of colder weather, but prolonged exposure to temperatures below 50 degrees can be harmful. The plant is not suited for extreme heat and should be protected from temperatures exceeding 90 degrees.

  • scissorsPruning

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' should be pruned to maintain its shape, encourage bushier growth, and remove spent flowers which can promote a second bloom. Prune the plant in early spring to remove dead or damaged stems and again after the first flowering to deadhead and shape the plant. If desired, a light pruning can also be done in the fall to prepare the plant for winter.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' thrives in well-draining soil with added organic matter such as compost or peat moss. The ideal soil pH for this plant is between 6.0 and 7.0. A mix of two parts garden soil, one part perlite, and one part compost is suitable for good growth and drainage.

  • plantRepotting

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' generally does not require frequent repotting and can be repotted every 2-3 years or when the plant has outgrown its current container. It is best done in the spring before new growth begins.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' is tolerant of a wide range of humidity conditions but prefers a moderate level. Aiming for 40% to 60% humidity is suitable for this plant, which generally means it can adapt well to average household humidity levels.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Provide bright, indirect light and adequate airflow for Clary Sage.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun to part shade in well-draining soil.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-9 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Clary Sage 'Vatican Pink' begins its life as a seed, which, when sown in late winter to early spring, germinates in warm soil. Upon sprouting, the seedling grows into a rosette of large, textured leaves, and as it matures, it forms a sturdy, upright clump. During its second year, clary sage sends up tall spikes of pink flowers in late spring or early summer, attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies. After flowering, the plant sets seed, completing its reproductive cycle. As a biennial or short-lived perennial, it may die back after seeding, or survive to regrow the following spring. In favorable conditions, clary sage can self-seed, creating new plants that continue the life cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring to Summer

    • Clary Sage, particularly the Salvia sclarea var. turkestaniana 'Vatican Pink', can be propagated by seed. The best time to sow the seeds is either in fall or early spring, when the soil has warmed up to at least 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 21 degrees Celsius). To propagate, scatter the seeds on the surface of the soil and press them in lightly, as they need light to germinate. It's important not to cover the seeds with soil but to ensure they are making good contact with the earth. Keep the soil moist until germination, which usually occurs within two weeks to a month. Once the seedlings have developed their second pair of true leaves, they can be thinned out or transplanted to their final growing positions, ensuring they have plenty of space, as Clary Sage can grow quite large.