Botanical Name: Salvia apiana
- English: White sage, Ceremonial sage, Sage smudge
- Also, known as: Bee sage, Sacred sage
Harvested: Cultivated (Hand Picked)
Parts Used: Sticks with leaves
- 8.5 to 9 -Inches long
- 1 to 1.5 -inch thick approximately
White sage is a handsome, silver-colored shrub native to the southwestern US and northwestern Mexico. This perennial shrub grows throughout many plant communities between sea level and up to 7,000 feet. Salvia apiana is a member of the Mint family Lamiaceae and grows up to 5 feet tall. The White sage produces clusters of white, silver-grey leaves that have a very pleasant and distinct aroma. The sage scent is earthy and soothing. Whitish, purple flowers emerge from the plant in the summer. These tiny flowers are pollinated by bumble-bees, hawk moths and wasps.
White sage has recently gained in popularity as an incense to burn for spiritual purposes. The leaves are picked and then rolled into a ‘smudge stick’. This stick is then burned in an attempt to purify one’s body or home. This ceremonial use is reminiscent of the manner white sage was used by the original settlers of California.