Sunday, May 27, 2012

A Tale of Four Sages

Twelve years ago when we first moved into this house my mother-in-law gave me a sprig of sage. Keep in mind I kill just about everything she gives me -- not on purpose mind you. I just do. But this little sprig grew and thrived and took over half my garden. And it was delicious. For twelve years I cooked with my fresh and dried sage. I added it to meats and gravies and soups. The plant grew lush and I grew cocky. "Hey, why don't you come over? I'll fix some of my sage and pork."

Here's a close up of this delightful smelling plant. 

Most of you 'in the know' can see where this is going. 

So a couple of months ago I was being shown a rooftop garden. The man was pointing to all his different herbs and naming them for me. "Basil, parsley, lemon balm." And then he pointed to what was the exact twin of my sage and said, "Of course you know rosemary." 

I gulped and said, "Of course."

The whole world telescoped away from me. I had just spent the past decade cooking with rosemary and thinking it was some exotic sage. What else wasn't what it seemed? 

I immediately went out and searched everywhere for real sage. Because quite frankly, I didn't know what the heck it tasted (or for that matter looked!) like. It must not have been the right season because it took visiting five different nurseries before I found three measly plants. I bought them all. 

Here's one of those plants after about two months. 

Yep. All dried up.

And here's the second one. Ol' Lucky Life Leaf.

Not so lucky. 

But then a miracle happened, the third plant survived. 

So far so good.

And you know what? I think I'm getting better at this gardening thing. I might even have somewhat of a green thumb. No really.

Just look at my blue roses!