With the aroma of ripe pineapples, pineapple sage is a intriguing herb, both edible and ornamental that has a place in an edible garden.
Pineapple Sage (Salvia Elegans) is a member of the Lamiaceae family and the Salvia genus. The herbaceous perennial grows up to 1.5 metres in height and produces aromatic oval shaped leaves which are green-grey on colour along with a yellowish hue. The herb produces attractive scarlet red flowers which are tubular in shape.
Crush the leaves between your fingers and the plant releases a pineapple aroma. The taste is very different to what you would expect. It has a herbaceous note along with a mild pineapple flavour.
How to Grow Pineapple Sage
Grow pineapple sage in full sun, in moist and well-drained soil. When the plant is new, water regularly at first then only during dry periods.
The seeds are not easy to source and you’d be better off buying a little plant and propagating it to grow more.
Pineapple Sage Plant Care
Once established, the plant doesn’t need frequent watering. If you’re growing it in containers, it has a habit of getting root bound rather quickly so make sure you prune it regularly and upgrade to a larger size container every 6 months or so.
My plant became root bound very quickly and the leaves started to yellow and dry. I’ve had to trim the roots and repot twice in a period of six months. I have since taken cuttings which rot easily in water and will plant elsewhere in the garden.
Both Pineapple Sage leaves and flowers are edible and can be used in salads, to flavour meat, poultry and fish as well as using it in desserts. If you’re using the flowers, consider adding them to desserts, a fruit salad as well as making jams.
Pineapple sage leaves can be used in beverages such as herbal tea sweetened with a touch of honey. It can be used to make an aromatic oxymel and used in cocktails. It pairs well with pineapple drinks and early in 2021, we’ll be sharing a cocktail recipe on our sister website Cocktails & Bars that puts the aromatic herb to use.
Want to Know More?
You’ll find more information on how to grow pineapple sage, which varieties to try, how to pair it with food and spirits, and how to use it in cocktails including a full recipe in my 260+ page digital book GROW YOUR OWN COCKTAIL GARDEN available now.