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Salvia elegans

Salvia elegans

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Pineapple salvia is a remarkable herbaceous perennial known for its fragrant, velvety, mid-green, triangular leaves that smell like tropical pineapples. The bright, red flowers grow on continuous flower stalks that are situated on the tips of each branch and reach 30 cm long. This plant is a must have in your herb garden as it brings the taste of the tropics to temperate gardens. Most of the plant is edible and can be used as a garnish, to flavour teas, iced drinks, salads and desserts.

Planning

Difficulty
Easy
Flowering time
Spring, Summer, Autumn

Harvesting

Harvest when needed. Avoid harvesting leaves until the plant is large enough as this can cause stress to the plant. The new shoot tips and flowers should be harvested fresh. This sage’s flavor intensifies prior to blooming, therefore, fewer leaves are required just before flowering.

Propagation

Division
Divide the base or root ball and space plants 60-90 cm apart.
Cuttings
Make 5-10 cm stem cuttings, and remove most of the leaves. Dip the cut end in some water, then rooting hormone powder and plant in potting soil, keeping it moist.
Seed
Sow seeds yearly in areas where frost is heavy. Seed collected in Autumn will germinate well in the following Spring.

Special features

Attracts useful insects
Attracts a variety of butterflies, bees and moths.
Attracts birds
Attracts nectar drinking sunbirds.
Pot plant
Grows well in any sized pot and will make a great statement on any patio or deck planted in a large container.
Autumn colour
Brings red colour to the garden during the autumn months.

Geography

Origin
Mexico, Guatemala
Natural climate
Temperate, Sub-tropical

Environment

Light
Full Sun, Partial Sun
Soil moisture
Moist
Soil type
Sand, Loam
Soil PH preference
Neutral
Frost hardiness
Tender

Uses

Medicinal
A tea of the leaves reliefs acidity and heartburn. It is known to help anxiety and high blood pressure.
Edible
Leaves can be steeped for teas or used fresh. The flowers taste like mint and make an attractive garnish for drinks, salads and desserts. It can be made into jelly, jam, perfume and potpourri.

Personality

Family
Lamiaceae
Flower colour
, Red
Scent
Mild

Problems

Little to no pests or diseases bother pineapple sage.

Companion plants

Grows well when planted with other herbs like Thyme, Basil and even beans.

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