Salvia Cutting Propagation: Can You Grow Salvia From Cuttings

Salvia Cutting
salvia cutting
(Image credit: Diana Taliun)

Salvia, commonly called sage, is a very popular garden perennial. There are over 900 species out there and every gardener has a favorite, like the deep purple clusters of Salvia nemorosa. If you have salvia and want more of these easy-care beauties, nobody can blame you. Fortunately, it’s not difficult to propagate. Can you grow salvia from cuttings? Read on for information about salvia cutting propagation including tips on how to root salvia cuttings.

Can You Grow Salvia from Cuttings?

The great thing about salvia cutting propagation is that you are certain to get plants exactly like the parent plant. With seed propagation, this isn’t always the case. Anyone with sage plants can start propagating salvia from cuttings. It’s easy and virtually foolproof. When you are propagating salvia from cuttings, you’ll want to cut segments of the plant from stem tips. Some experts recommend that the cutting include one bud at the top of the stem and two leaf nodes. These are the places leaves grow from the stem. Others suggest taking a cutting between 2 and 8 inches (5-20 cm.) long. In either case, be sure you use sharp, sterilized pruning shears and make the cut just below a node.

How to Root Salvia Cuttings

As you take the cuttings for salvia cutting propagating, place them in a glass of water, cut-end first. That helps to keep them fresh. The next step is to trim off all leaves on the lower few inches (8 cm.) of the stem cutting. If you are working with big-leaf salvia, also cut off the lower half of each leaf you’ve left on the stem. You can either start propagating salvia from cuttings by placing them in water or by putting them in soil. If you opt for salvia cutting propagation in water, just put the cuttings in a vase and add a few inches (8 cm.) of water. After a few weeks, you’ll see roots growing. When rooting salvia cuttings in soil, dip the cut end in rooting hormone, then plant it in moist potting medium. One good medium to try is a 70/30 mix of perlite/vermiculite and potting soil. Again, expect roots in about 14 days.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.