What is the Pineapple Sage Plant?

Written by andrea julian
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What is the Pineapple Sage Plant?
Pineapple sage will attract hummingbirds to your garden. (two hummingbirds at a feeder image by Clarence Alford from Fotolia.com)

Herbs make wonderful additions to a garden. They are fast growing, edible, and often have a delightful fragrance. Salvia is a genus that contains many edible, easy-to-grow herbs. Pineapple sage has many attributes that make it a great addition to your home garden.


Salvia elegans is a medium sized perennial herb that is commonly known as pineapple sage. It reaches about 3 feet in height. The stems of the plant are square, and it has soft, furry leaves that are about 2 to 4 inches in length. The leaves have the wonderful pineapple fragrance from which it gets its name. It has shockingly scarlet-red tubular flowers with two distinct lips that are about an inch long. Its natural habitat is in Mexico and Guatemala, where it grows at elevations between 8,000 to 10,000 feet.

Culinary Uses

The plant's pineapple-scented leaves work as a great addition to fresh salads or as a garnish for drinks, desserts or fish. The red flowers have a honey-like flavour and are edible.

In Gardens

Pineapple sage is a fast-growing perennial that can be first grown in a small pot and transferred into the garden. It needs a space of about 4½ feet to grow. It will grow best in full sun and in well-drained soil. Although it prefers warmer climates, it can be grown in most settings. However, it blooms in fall, which can be a problem if you live in an area that receives early frost. It can be brought inside if it is left in an area that receives full sun.


The lovely flowers and sweet smell attracts hummingbirds and butterflies.


Aphids can be a problem for pineapple sage. Adding ladybirds to your garden should keep the plant free of aphids.

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