Are you thinking about growing pineapple in your house? Here’s a tip that would make the process easier for you: pineapple plants are best when treated as houseplants. Though it takes some time for them to grow, if you are patient, you are sure to get evident results.
Now, you might have heard people saying pineapple trees. However, they are entirely wrong. Pineapples are plants. They don’t grow on trees. Rooting takes a long time and people have to wait for about two to three years before the plant finally starts to yield fruits. In the meantime, people can still enjoy the foliage and witness a tropical treat growing indoors!
If you are keen on growing pineapples, you must know are few interesting facts about them. Read below to know some facts about pineapples.
- Pineapples fall under the category of bromeliad. This makes them a relative species to Spanish moss and the colourful bromeliads that are usually grown as houseplants.
- Smooth Cayenne is the greatest cultivator of pineapples. It’s produced by selective breeding. The plant is spineless, comes with striped leaves and low fibre flesh.
- Pineapple roots can absorb nutrients and water. Surprisingly, even pineapple leaves can!
- A fully grown pineapple plant is expected to be several feet tall and wide.
- To get a plant this big, you need to nurture the pineapple plant for over a year. Keep the containers outside during the summers but bring them indoors during winters. Frost is dangerous for pineapple plants.
- Don’t water them too much. They have tough leaves which means, pineapple plants don’t lose much water through evaporation. Hence they require little water for their growth.
- Soils with good drainage are extremely essential for pineapple plant growth.
- There’s no need of planting them in top-quality soils. They come from a family of bromeliads and none of the bromeliads have a big root system.
- Slightly acidic soils are however good for pineapple growth.
- Pineapple plants derive maximum nutrients from their leaves than roots.
- Pineapples need direct sunlight for faster growth, even in tropical regions. However, keeping them indoors also works.
- Pineapples thrive happily in containers and tubs.
Willing to know how to root pineapple plants? Let’s see below.
Rooting a pineapple plant
The easiest way to plant a new pineapple plant is by rooting it. Follow these easy steps explained below to know how to grow a pineapple plant indoors.
- Step 1: Buy fresh, ripe pineapple
While buying pineapple from the market, choose one that’s evenly ripe. Make sure it has a set of fresh green leaves on top. Also, don’t buy the overripe ones or that have sick or dead leaves.
- Step 2: Cut off pineapple crown
Take a sharp knife, slice off the top of the pineapple fruit, and cut off its top portion.
Be careful while cutting off its rind. Eliminate any fruit flesh that might rot later. Make very precise slices in the stalk, until a ring of brownish dots appears. These dots are the root primordia, the unformed roots are would further grow when planted.
- Step 3: Remove leaves from the stalk
To expose more of the stalk, pull off the lower leaves.
- Step 4: Let the stalk dry
Keep the pineapple crown aside, allowing it to dry. Pineapples tend to rot; hence it’s important to dry out the cut before you plant it somewhere.
- Step 5: Plant pineapple stalk
Take a flowerpot. Fill about 8 inches of it with clayey soil. Add a mixture of cactus potting mix or sandy soil, to ensure that the soil drains faster. Now plant the pineapple crown 1 inch deep in the soil and gently press the soil around it, to keep it firmly in position.
- Step 6: Water pineapple stalk accordingly
Next, you must pour water over the stalk gently to ensure that the soil is moist. Take spray bottles for this purpose. Take the container to a windowsill that gets direct sunlight.
Water the container whenever the soil becomes dry. Don’t overwater it. Also, don’t add any fertiliser yet.
- Step 7: Let the stalk root firmly
Rooting takes place in about three months. Till then, sparsely water the plant, enough to keep it moist.
If you are willing to see if has rooted in, tug on the crown to see it’s firmly holding the soil. Don’t pull very hard as it might break the roots.
- Step 8: Repot pineapple plant
Once you are sure that the plant has firmly rooted itself, new leaves will start to appear from the centre. At this time, you can repot the pineapple plant in a larger pot. This pot should also be filled with fast-draining mixed soil.
The process is simple and hassle-free. Many people refuse to believe but growing pineapple plants indoors is easy. When you have successfully grown pineapple plants, you would feel refreshed and your home would be filled with a great aroma.
How long does it take for the pineapple plant to grow fully?
Many times people question the time the plant would take to yield fruits. As per general rule, the plant will take anything between 17 to 24 months to start yielding fruits. However, if you are growing the plant indoors, it’s likely to take longer.
The long duration exists because it takes 20p flowers to develop into one fruit! Isn’t that surprising? This also means that whatever you see on the pineapple fruit from the outside was once a flower. The flowers together formed a berry which upon coalescing with other berries finally formed the pineapple fruit.
A General Understanding of Time
As we said, the length of time required for the full growth of the plant depends on whether the plant is grown outside tropical regions and what methods have been implemented for rooting the plant. If the plant is being grown in tropical regions like Hawaii, the plant is expected to bear fruits from 16 months onwards. However, if you are growing it indoors, outside tropical reunions, it would take 24 hours or more.
The process in which the plant was originally rooted will also affect its growth process, health and determine when it will yield fruit finally.
Ideal Temperature for Pineapple Plants
The temperature range between 69 F and 85 F is ideal for pineapple plants to thrive. Maintain this temperature to get tasty. But, you can apply to play a small trick with the temperature to fasten its flowering stage and get fruits quicker. Here’s what you can do.
You can prefer to keep the plant in a shaded region, where no direct sunlight can enter. Shorter lengths of sunlight will certainly affect the plant’s growth, which will be evident via its flowering stage. If you are callous enough and put the plant in direct sunlight, it would survive even then, only the difference is that it would experience near drought-like conditions. This can severely affect the quality of the pineapples.
How to Care for Your Pineapple Plant?
Enlisted below are some important things you must note to provide the best care to your pineapple plant.
- Plant Location
Make sure your plant gets bright sunlight for most parts of the day. If you keep it in a shaded region there’s no problem, as long as it’s receiving bright sunlight.
Don’t keep the plant outside when temperatures are freezing. During extremely cold winters, it might be best to shift the plant to a large south-facing window.
- Water and Fertilizer
Make sure the fertiliser you are using contains important plant nutrients like phosphoric, potash, nitrogen, magnesium, etc. Consider buying fertilisers that contain fewer amounts of magnesium and higher amounts of other essential nutrients.
When the plant has just started to grow, fertilise it around every 8 to 10 weeks. When the plant starts to mature, apply fertilisers more often. However, follow the manufacturer’s instructions in this regard.
Overfeeding and overwatering are the best ways to kill a pineapple plant. Water sparsely, not until it’s needed. You only have to keep the soil moist. When the soil dries out, water it again.
- Pineapple Growing Season
Pineapples grow well mostly during the summertime. The growth process slows down when the days get short.
- Pineapple Blooming
A pineapple plant isn’t likely to bloom often. It blooms once in two or three years. This is the case with every other bromeliad. If you are interested in fastening its blooming process, you can expose the plant to ethylene gas.
- Harvesting Pineapples
Once the pineapple plant yields flowers, it takes a few months to produce the next fruit. Smaller pineapple plants are likely to produce small fruits but they are certainly yummy. You can pick the fruits when they appear golden yellow.
As you can see, taking care of pineapple plants is time-consuming but it’s rewarding as well. If you are willing to make the plant grow faster, you have to be consistent. Be observant. Notice how your plant is a reaction to its surroundings. Take time to research the plant and find out ways to keep it happy and healthy.
A rotating team of writers and editors dedicated to providing reliable information for the readers of American Promise. We’re all passionate about cannabis and actively engaged in this “budding” industry.