How can I Grow Pineapple?

Mary McMahon

Pineapple is a popular tropical fruit in many regions of the world, and some people are surprised to learn that it is fairly easy to grow pineapple at home, although some patience is required. If you want to grow pineapple, you're going to need a warm, sunny spot to grow the plant, as pineapples are tropical fruits. You will also need a pineapple, and a graduated set of pots to accommodate the plant as it grows. You may also want to be aware that it can take up to two years for a pineapple plant to produce fruit, so it is a good idea to think in the long term when you grow pineapple.

Pineapple is easy to grow.
Pineapple is easy to grow.

Start by removing the crown of your pineapple. There are two ways to do this: by cutting, or by twisting the crown out. Sometimes, you are able to grip the leaves of the pineapple and twist firmly to pull the crown out as a neat unit. In other cases, you will need to cut the top off and trim it to remove excess flesh. In either case, the crown needs to rest for five to seven days after removal to dry out a bit.

After resting, you need to root your pineapple. Some people prefer to root their crowns in a bowl of fresh water, changing the water periodically, as this allows them to see if the roots are developing or not. Others have success with planting their pineapple crown directly, and allowing the plant to root that way. Pineapples like loose, well-drained soil with around a third organic material such as compost. Some garden suppliers sell bromeliad soil mixes, which are ideal for pineapples.

Pineapple plants do not use a lot of water, and they hate being damp. You may not need to water at all for the first week or so after planting, and after that, water lightly once a week while you grow pineapple. In the spring, when the plant is actively growing, apply a mild fertilizer every month; regular fertilizers recommend for houseplants are often perfectly effective, and you can also buy pineapple food at some garden suppliers.

When you grow pineapple, make sure to transplant the plant as it grows. Pineapple plants get extremely large before they produce fruit, and it is a good idea to think ahead about a space for the plant; they can reach six feet (two meters) in diameter before fruiting. Pineapples tend to produce flowers in the winter, when days are a bit shorter; if your plant doesn't flower during its second winter, enclose it in a plastic bag with a cut apple. Apples release ethylene gas, which will promote flowering.

After your plant starts thriving, it will produce shoots and suckers which can be rooted in additional pots to grow more pineapples. Once it fruits, you can also use the fruit to grow another pineapple plant.

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