Salvia elegans

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Salvia elegans
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Lamiaceae
Genus: Salvia
S. elegans
Binomial name
Salvia elegans

Salvia rutilans Carrière

Salvia elegans, a species with several varieties including pineapple sage and tangerine sage,[1] is a perennial shrub native to Mexico. It inhabits Madrean and Mesoamerican pine-oak forests between 6,000 and 9,000 ft (1,800 and 2,700 m).[2]


Salvia elegans Pineapple Sage has tubular red flowers and an attractive scent to the leaves that is similar to pineapple. It produces numerous erect leafy stems up to 150 cm and flowers in the late autumn.[3] The red flowers are attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies. In a highland temperate forest in central Mexico, pineapple sage was found to be one of the three most-visited species by hummingbirds.[4] It is a short-day plant. The flowering season in Mexico is August onward; further north it may not flower till later autumn, and if there is no frost, it may flower until Spring.

The variety "Honey Melon", which has the same pineapple fragrance in the leaves, blooms early in the summer, rather than in autumn.[2]

Salvia Elegans Tangerine Sage grows to about 60 cm - 90 cm tall, has bronze edged leaves and a citrus scent. It is summer flowering.[5]


In cultivation, pineapple sage grows to 1.2 to 1.5 m (3.9 to 4.9 ft) tall, with the roots extending underground to form a large clump. The pale yellow-green leaves are veined, and covered with fine hairs. Six to twelve scarlet flowers grow in whorls, with a long inflorescence that blooms gradually and over a prolonged period of time. With a hard frost, the plant will die down to the ground and grow back the following spring. Pineapple sage was introduced into horticulture about 1870.[2]


The essential oil of S. elegans consists primarily of caffeic acid and its derivatives, such as rosmarinic acid and salvianolic acid, and flavones.[6]


The leaves and flowers of S. elegans are edible.[7] The plant is used in Mexican traditional medicine, especially for anxiety and hypertension.[8]


  1. ^ Epic Gardening: Salvia Elegans
  2. ^ a b c Clebsch, Betsy; Barner, Carol D. (2003). The New Book of Salvias. Timber Press. pp. 115–117. ISBN 978-0-88192-560-9.
  3. ^ / Monty Don: Sage concern
  4. ^ Lara, Carlos (Mar 2006). "Temporal dynamics of flower use by hummingbirds in a highland temperate forest in Mexico". Écoscience. 13 (1): 23–29. doi:10.2980/1195-6860(2006)13[23:TDOFUB]2.0.CO;2.
  5. ^ / Langthorn's Plantery: Salvia Elegans Tangerine
  6. ^ Pereira, Olívia R.; Catarino, Marcelo D.; Afonso, Andrea F.; Silva, Artur M. S.; Cardoso, Susana M. (2018). "Salvia elegans, Salvia greggii and Salvia officinalis Decoctions: Antioxidant Activities and Inhibition of Carbohydrate and Lipid Metabolic Enzymes". Molecules. 23 (12): 3169. doi:10.3390/molecules23123169. PMC 6321363. PMID 30513773.
  7. ^ Hanson, Beth (2001). Gourmet Herbs. Brooklyn Botanic Garden. p. 90. ISBN 978-1-889538-21-1.
  8. ^ Herrera-Ruiza, Maribel; García-Beltrána, Yolanda; Morab, Sergio; Díaz-Véliz, Gabriela; Vianac, Glauce S.B.; Tortorielloa, Jaime; Ramíreza, Guillermo (Aug 2006). "Antidepressant and anxiolytic effects of hydroalcoholic extract from Salvia elegans". Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 107 (1): 53–8. doi:10.1016/j.jep.2006.02.003. PMID 16530995.

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