Michael Allen
Newly Registered
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2012 5:58 am
Location: Moorestown, NJ

"Pineapple Sage"

Hello. I live in South Jersey zone 6. This spring , I planted 2 healthy "pineapple sage" plants and took great care of them in my garden. To date, neither one has any flowers. Both are healthy, green , & bushy.
Any ideas as to why they did not bloom ?

P.S. They were well watered and received at least 6 hours of sun daily.

Thank you,

Michael

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

Possibly too much care-- too much water and too fertile soil. Sounds odd, but all that care encourages lush growth more than flowering. They actually flower a lot more when stressed a bit. Sage is a desert plant used to drought and dry sandy lean soil.

But if you are using it for culinary purposes including tea, you really don't want it to flower anyway.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27896
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Ah, you posted one year that I didn't grow them, but I usually grow them every year. and I don't live too far away from you.

Normally, they don't flower until a week or two before frost arrives. :roll: So enjoy them when they finally start to bloom. Procrastinating hummingbirds appreciate the late blooms.

They are very easy to propagate from cuttings, and that's what I normally do -- take cuttings before first frost kills them -- they will root in water or sandy (1/4-1/3 sand) potting soil. They are very forgiving to grow inside as long as you give them good light and don't overwater them, and you will have starter plants next spring. Watch out for red spidermites especially in late winter/early spring.

If you have freeze-free location like basement or insulated garage, you can also dig them up before the geound freezes and try to overwinter them. I have only done this successfully once or twice and I dug them up before first frost) The leaves will die and the plants will go dormant so prune them to good sturdy stems, then keep them minimally watered. I used a shop light to give them light and extra warmth since my garage has no windows and is uninsulated. (My difficulty with this method is that it WILL get down to as low as 24°F or even lower in the garage during the depth of winter when we have negative single digit nights and tweens days.)

This year, I HAD cuttings growing, but I lost track of them in the spring crunch and the drought killed them in their too small containers. :(

lily51
Greener Thumb
Posts: 735
Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:40 am
Location: Ohio, Zone 5

I planted two pinapple sages directly into garden and one into a container.
The one in the container grew enormously, and I love the look of it.
Can I treat it like a potted geranium when I bring it in or should I cut it back, put in basement,then water in spring when it starts coming out of dormancy?

lily51
Greener Thumb
Posts: 735
Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2010 6:40 am
Location: Ohio, Zone 5

I planted two pinapple sages directly into garden and one into a container.
The one in the container grew enormously, and I love the look of it.
Can I treat it like a potted geranium when I bring it in or should I cut it back, put in basement,then water in spring when it starts coming out of dormancy?

Susan W
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1859
Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 6:46 pm
Location: Memphis, TN

Ironic I was going through some threads and saw this on Pineapple Sage. I had several, in large pots and in-ground, mainly for the farmers market. Not a great seller (sprigs of leaves). I culled the herd this spring (most comes back here), down to 4 perhaps. I scratched my head on why not blooming yet, this is October?! I am thinking as it is in with other herbs not fertilized much, but gets fish about every month (basil 7-10 days). Never gave it anything such as Flower-tone. I don't want the others to go into bloom, and go lean or fish for green. I did work in some flower tone, probably too little too late. But there are some buds forming!

BTW, they have been pretty green plants all season!!
Have fun!
Susan

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27896
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Lily I think geranium method should suit this herb's growing habits. If you do this, let us know how it turns out.

Susan, don't you love happy coincidences?
FYI - similar to other herbs, pineapple sage's fragrance intensifies when kept dry and and lean. I like using the leaves in after dinner digestive hot herbal tea in a blend with mint, chamomile or fennel seeds as well as alternate flavor as sprigs in ice teas and lemonade. I also think it's works well in poultry and pork dishes.

When in bloom, I think the combination of the fabulous red blossoms and the green leaves look wonderful as salad and drink garnish.

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

OK... now you convinced me, Applestar. Sounds wonderful. Next year I will have to try growing it. You-all sure know how to feed a junkie's habit! :)
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

Christophe
Newly Registered
Posts: 5
Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 11:51 am
Location: Cornwall

Salvia elegans, the pineapple sage, has fantastic foliage scent. I have also the tangerine version, a slightly more citrusy smell. I have these and lemon citriodora in pots along pathway and what scent when touched or brushed against. Yes, the pimeapple sage flowers very late, September onwards with tall scarlet flowers. Best in pots as it gets very large in garden. Easy to propagate too. Overwinter indoors.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11337
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Pineapple sage blooms nearly all year here once they mature. They are perennial in Hawaii and they get about 3 ft tall. They do not need a lot of nitrogen, they just get bushy and will not bloom. The flowers and the leaves both taste like pineapple. the flowers can be frozen in ice cubes, added to salads, tea, or punch for decoration. I live in zone 10-11 8)
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27896
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Love it! :D
I think I mentioned elsewhere, but I found my lost cuttings when I cleaned up the frost killed Seminole squash vines in late fall. Despite being buried under all that squash foliage, neglected all summer, and being outside way past the fall "curfew", two of the 6 pack cells survived. They are now in individual pots inside and hopefully will provide another generation and more in my garden this summer. I can take cuttings as soon as they start taking off. :wink:

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11337
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Great! It is a good thing that most herbs can take a beating and keep coming back.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27896
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: "Pineapple Sage"

So those foundlings grew HUGE last year in the patio window box. :D
image.jpg
image.jpg (64.33 KiB) Viewed 2064 times
I have a forelorn love relationship -- is best way to describe -- with them. I have had a plant and subsequent clones propagated from cuttings for several years now. They will die with first frost, and the tender perennial roots won't survive the winter here, so must be overwintered indoors.

So far, no matter the variable weather condition of the growing season, they will not start blooming until only a week is left until the first frost. I... and the remaining or southward bound passing hummingbirds get to enjoy the blossoms for just that week -- sometimes not even.

But by the end, I will have amassed a HUGE amount of blossoms as well as armload stalks of leaves.

I propagate cuttings from some of the sturdiest stalks, and dig up the mother plant(s) after severe top and root pruning to keep in the unheated garage. Sometimes they survive and other times not. I always have the cuttings to continue from. If you can bring the mother plant inside, then they will continue to bloom and grow in the house, though they will slow down in depth of the winter. Aphids and scales don't seem to bother it, but watch out for red spider mites and white flies.

Fresh pineapple sage leaves smell amazing when brushed/bruised, but not so much fresh in tea. Great in salads, curries, and pork/chicken dishes when chopped and sprinkled as fresh garnish. They smell heavenly after being dried and I use both flowers and leaves for night time herbal tea blend. I'm going to try making herbal jelly with it this year.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

imafan26
Mod
Posts: 11337
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:32 pm
Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: "Pineapple Sage"

I never considered pineapple sage a problem child. I have my sage out in the herb garden. It competes with weeds and alkaline soil and chronically low nitrogen levels. Occasionally I feed it. In summer the white flies go after it and I cut it back once in a while

With all of the special care I have given it. It rewards me with 9 months of continuous bloom. Almost all of the flowering plants don't bloom well Nov-January.

P.S. It would probably bloom better in a warmer climate.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

bladesvixen
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jun 27, 2014 4:51 pm

Re: "Pineapple Sage"

My poor pineapple sage has not flourished since first planting. I have it in a Large clay pot and gave it plant food in the first month. Now in its second minth, it's just withering away. I keep it out of direct sunlight in the heat of the day over 105 degrees and water every 2 days or when I check the soil under mulch is dry near roots.

I planted so many new things this year, but was most excited for a large blooming fragrant pineapple sage :cry:

Any ideas to save it?
Attachments
image.jpg

User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27896
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: "Pineapple Sage"

What kind of soil?
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

Return to “Perennials”