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When to Prune Pineapple Sage? [All About It]

From jams to teas, pineapple sage fits almost everywhere. And, I know as sad as it may sound, you will be required to get rid of the pineappley smelling leaves once in a while.

On a brighter note, how about we save those pruned pineapple sage leaves and store them for later?

The best time to prune your wild pineapple sage is after the blooming seasons, that is, right before the winter season. You can cut it down entirely, leaving only a few inches above the ground to promote healthy and thicker growth in the coming spring seasons.

Listen to this article here:

A Flowering Pineapple Sage Plant
A Flowering Pineapple Sage Plant (Source: Pixabay)

After all, who does not love a lush pineapple sage, right?

Now, let us dive straight into the why’s and how’s of selectively removing the disobedient pineapple sage branches before the winter frost hits.

Pineapple Sage in Winter

Pineapple sage hates winters. In fact, their aerial body is not constructed to survive harsh climatic conditions, be it winter or summer.

I hate to break this to you, but your beautiful, lush outdoor pineapple sage will not survive the harsh winter conditions.

However, that does not mean you will have to run to the plant store in the following spring to stock up on another pineapple sage plant.

Sad pineapple sage
Somewhat Unhappy Pineaaple Sage Plant

Your plant will start losing all its leaves beginning from mid-autumn, and by the winter season, the aerial part of the pineapple sage will ultimately die.

However, the roots are still able to survive the frosts.

As soon as spring approaches, the plant will produce new branches and rejuvenate into a fully healthy plant.

Now that was for outdoor pineapple sage plants that have been planted in the ground or on a pot.

As for indoor pineapple sage, your plant will definitely survive the winter if you can maintain a healthy growing condition.

But they might not produce as many new leaves and lose a few mature leaves.

Nevertheless, you will be able to enjoy this flavourful curative herb once in a while in cold winters, along with your morning tea.

So, let us save that potted outdoor sage by bringing them indoors during the winters.

Reasons to Prune Pineapple Sage

Plant Pruning Tools
Plant Pruning Tools (Source: Pixabay)

As important as determining the pruning season for your pineapple sage, it is also necessary to understand why you need to prune them occasionally.

There are many reasons for you to prune your pineapple sage.

I have discussed a few of the crucial reasons below, but are not limited to.

  • A thorough yearly prune helps maintain the health and vitality of the plant.
  • It gets rid of damaged, dead, or dying leaves and stems.
  • It removes the crossing over and rubbing of the branches causing damage to the plant.
  • Pruning helps maintain air circulation and provides ample space for the pineapple sage to spread around.
  • Removing unwanted shoots and size control is yet another popular reason for pruning.
  • If you have placed your pineapple sage indoors (or outdoors), trimming helps restore its ornamental value.
  • Trimming the plant also helps maintain the desired shape.

The main reasons to prune your Pineapple Sage are discussed below.

1. Is your Pineapple Sage Heavily Infested with Pests?

Another good reason to prune your pineapple sage thoroughly is when it is impossible to get rid of the pests.

This is one of the very uncommon reasons; however, if your outdoor pineapple sage has been neglected or left unchecked, one cannot deny the possibilities.

The most common bugs found in pineapple sage are thrips, aphids, spittlebugs, and spider mites.

Pest Infested Leaf
Pest Infested Leaf (Source: Pixabay)

A heavy infestation can leave your plant looking sickly and stressed.

If the pesticides do not seem to work or if you cannot avoid the reoccurrence, there is no other better solution than a thorough prune.

For such adverse conditions, you do not have to wait for the autumn or winter seasons to approach.

Although the wait might have yielded better results, sometimes it is not worth risking the health of your plant.

Additionally, there are risks related to the transfer of the bugs to other nearby plants. Therefore, go ahead and prune your bugs-filled pineapple sage for good!

2. Does your plant appear sickly or diseased?

Nobody would want to pluck a diseased pineapple sage leaf and place it on their scrumptious plate of spaghetti.

And, considering the risks, you should definitely avoid ingesting an unhealthy leaf.

Pineapple sage rust is a widespread occurrence. It is an air-born disease transmitted through spores and is common in outdoor pineapple sage plants.

It usually begins with yellow and whitish spots on the leaves that gradually spreads throughout the plant.

Eventually, your pineapple sage will stop producing new growth and appears stunted.

Although there are a few preventive measures to minimize rust, the only verified cure for this is thorough pruning.

Hence, if your pineapple sage seems to look unhealthy or diseased, it is best to go ahead and prune them right away.

Please do not wait for the plant to die on its own.

Ideal Time to Prune Pineapple Sage

Getting the time right is key to giving your pineapple sage a healthy prune.

After all, you cannot prune your pineapple in summer and expect them to provide you with plenty of leaves the very next day, right?

Note: Pruning is stressful, a good kind of stress that the plants require to restore their energy and vitality.

If you do precisely and accurately, you will get yourself a happy pineapple sage.

And if not, well, let us not imagine the dreadful alternative.

There are several factors to consider when calculating the right time for you to prune your pineapple sage.

Pruning before the winter seasons might be a general rule, but does it always have to be absolute? I guess not!

Your Location and Climate Condition

If you are from the Northern hemisphere (Canada, Sweden, Finland, etc.), you might not have to wait for the winters to prune your pineapple sage.

You can go ahead and prune your pineapple sage as early as the beginning of autumn. It is best not to expose your pineapple sage to the chilly autumn winds.

On the contrary, if you are from moderately warm climates (India, Nepal, Australia, etc.) without any snow during the winters, you can prune your pineapple sage at the beginning of winter.

As for the few countries with no winter seasons (Thailand, Tuvalu, Dubai, Mexico, etc.), do not think your pineapple sage will do good without a prune.

Regardless of cold temperatures, you will still be required to prune them once a month. Prune them when the climate is slightly towards the cooler end.

The best way to calculate your own trimming time is to check the leaves.

Here are a few ways to analyze whether your pineapple sage would do good with a thorough winter prune.
• Are new growths delayed or absent?
• Do the leaves look dry and shriveled?
• Has your plant lost all or most of the leaves?

If the answer to any of these is yes, go ahead and prune your pineapple sage!

If you are new to planting and want to grow a pineapple sage of your own, you might want to check this article: Growing Pinaapple Sage.

Proper Time to Prune Pineapple Sage

Trim the pineapple sage in the morning when the plant is moist inside and dry on the surface.

During the mornings, your plant will have a high content of water. Any damages incurred during this time are easily cured throughout the day.

However, if you prune the plant in the afternoon or evening, you will end up stressing the plant. And, your pineapple sage will not be able to heal as quickly as it should.


Tips to Care for Pineapple Sage

Pineapple sages are hardy plants and easy growers. They do not require much attention as long as you can provide a perfect growing condition.

Pineapple sage is tough to kill; no wonder they are beginner-friendly.

The following golden tips will help you take care of your pineapple sage and keep them whole.

Pineapple Sage Infused Tea
Pineapple Sage Infused Tea (Source: Pexels)

1. Light and Temperature

  • Pineapple sage loves plenty of sunlight. Please place it in a sunny location to promote healthy growth. However, do not position them directly under the sun.
  • They thrive the best in temperatures between 15 degrees Celsius to 21 degrees Celsius (60 degrees Fahrenheit to 70 degrees Fahrenheit).

2. Watering Schedule

  • Pineapple sage is a pretty tolerant plant that can endure severe drought conditions. Henceforth, do not go overboard with watering. Make sure to water only when the few inches of the topsoil are dry.
  • You can add in some amount of mulch or moss around the topsoil. It will help retain the soil moisture and reduce the occurrence of weeds.

3. Soil Composition

  • A well-draining potting mix works best for pineapple sage. Mix in plenty of perlites and sand to your potting mix for healthy roots.
  • You can also grow your pineapple sage indoors in an orchid mix or cocopeat.

4. Fertilization Requirements

  • Feed your pineapple sage with a well-balanced plant vitamin once in a while during the growing seasons. Use a slow-releasing fertilizer that will take around three months to break down in the soil thoroughly.
  • You can also use natural and organic fertilizers to boost the growth of your pineapple sage.
  • Make sure to fertilize only during the spring season and not more than once in 30-45 days depending upon the size of your plant.

5. Pot Size

  • Pineapple sage loves abundant space, both above and below the soil. Hence, it is best to use larger pots.
  • Make sure that your pot has numerous drainage holes at the bottom for the removal of excess water.

Related article: How to Choose the Right Pot for your Plants?

6. Controlling Pests and Insects

  • Although pest infestation is not very common in pineapple sage, it is best to keep an eye on the plant once in a while.
  • As a preventive measure, spray the plant with neem oil or soap-water spray to keep the bugs at bay.

7. Propagation

  • You can expand your collection of pineapple sage by propagating the stem or germinating the seeds.
  • Take the cutting in early spring and root them in either water or soil medium.

Additional Tips

  • Plant your pineapple sage in early spring for healthy growth.
  • Make sure you plant your baby pineapple sage at least 30 inches apart as they will rapidly grow into a huge plant.
  • Pineapple sage does not appreciate frequent rainfall. Place them on a shaded spot during the rainy seasons to avoid root rot.
  • Pineapple sage is considered an invasive plant; there, we have one more reason to go ahead with yearly pruning!


Well, if you want to give an all-natural exotic scent to your living space, go ahead and get a pineapple sage for yourself. You might as well get rid of those pricy air fresheners.

Fun Fact: Pineapple sage is used as a traditional herb in curing depression, hypertension, constipation, digestive problems, heat burns, and even epilepsy

all the herbs outdoor
Pineapple sage (Red) growing outdoor along with other herbs

However, as a rule of the thumb, remember to cut the stems and leaves not only to prepare your favorite cup of tea or garnish your dish but also to encourage your pineapple sage to be healthy, happy, and ready. For the next season!

If you want to decorate your bedroom, living room, or any other room in your house, be sure to check my other articles. They will add a great vibe to your room.

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