Pineapple

The pineapple is a tropical plant with an edible fruit; it is the most economically significant plant in the family Bromeliaceae. The pineapple is indigenous to South America, where it has been cultivated for many centuries. The scientific name of pineapple is Ananas comosus. Pineapples grow as a small shrub; the individual flowers of the unpollinated plant fuse to form a multiple fruit.



The plant is normally propagated from the offset produced at the top of the fruit, or from a side shoot, and typically mature within a year. The pineapple—which is no relation to pine trees or apples—got its name through the combination of the Spanish "pina" (so named because it reminded them of a pine cone) and the English "apple" (so named because of its sweet taste).


Table of Contents


Height(Avg)

between 3 and 6 feet


Width-Circumference (Avg)

between 3 and 6 feet


Approximate pH

4.5 - 6.5


Different Types of Pineapples


There are different types of pineapple that are classified into classes. These groups vary according to texture; color, shape, and size. They also differ in terms of fiber content, sweetness, and acidity.


Abacaxi Pineapples



Abacaxi pineapples are very sweet and quite resistant to disease, making them a very popular crop to grow. They weigh anywhere from two to eleven pounds. They’re spiny and tall, and their flesh is nearly translucent in color. They’re delicious, but too delicate for commercial purposes.


Queen Pineapples



Found mostly in Australia and South Africa, Queen pineapples are dark-yellow with a small core. The Queen pineapple has a pleasant aroma and flavor, but does not can well. Instead, they’re better eaten fresh. Queen pineapples are more tolerant of diseases and cold temperatures than other types of pineapple.


Red Spanish Pineapples



Aptly named, Red Spanish pineapples are orange-red in color and are grown in the Caribbean. It produces fruit that has a light-yellow color and an aromatic flavor. They’re sturdy and high in fiber, but aren’t as tender as other varieties.


Smooth Cayenne Pineapples



Smooth Cayenne pineapples are likely the ones you’d find in a typical food store in the United States. They’re the main type of pineapple grown in Hawaii, and are bigger than most other varieties, weighing in at four to ten pounds. They feature a distinctive yellow flesh and are very juicy.


Pernambuco Pineapples



Pernambuco pineapples are mostly grown in Brazil. They’re white, tender, and juicy with a mild flavor. They’re yellow both inside and out and feature distinctive long, spiny leaves.


Mordilona Pineapples


Mordilona pineapples are grown in the northeastern Andes of Colombia and Venezuela. They’re large, irregular, and cylindrical with a yellow to orange peel. The flesh is cream-colored and sweet.


Brecheche



Brecheche pineapples are small, cylinder-shaped, and olive colored. The plant is completely spike-free. The flesh of Brecheche is yellow, very fragrant, and juicy with a small core.


Singapore Red


Signapore Red pineapples feature green leaves with a reddish stripe at the end. The fruits are reddish, cylindrical, and small with golden-yellow flesh. They’re disease and pest-resistant and are great for canning.


Panare



This pineapple is named after the Indian tribe who grew it in Venezuela. The fruit is bottle-shaped and orange-colored. The flesh is deep yellow, slightly fragrant, and has a small core.


Jewel Pineapples



It is a pink-glow pineapple. Compared to traditional pineapples, Jewel pineapples are juicer and sweeter. The Jewel pineapple plants are grown in the wilderness of Costa Rica.


Sugar Loaf Pineapple



A type of Smooth Cayenne pineapple known as Pan de Azucar or Kona Sugarloaf, grown by south American. These pineapple varieties are also called as Brazillian White pineapples, a pineapple with high sugar content and zero acidity. It has a white flesh with a soft edible core.


Growing Pineapples


There are 3 Methods for Growing Pineapples.


Method 1: Starting a Pineapple From a Top Cutting


Starting a pineapple from a green top is possibly the cheapest and easiest way to begin. Buy a well-ripened fruit with the healthiest looking top you can find. Some rough leaves are okay, but try to find the best one of the lot. Simply remove the top by grasping the fruit in one hand and the top in the other and twisting it off in one steady motion (like wringing out a towel). Remove the lower half dozen or so leaves from the bottom of the green shoot, then set it aside and allow it to "cure," or dry out, for about a week. Set the top in a shallow bowl of warm water. Change the water every few days, and observe as roots grow over the next few weeks. Then plant the cured pineapple top in a 10-inch pot filled with a coarse potting mix, and fertilize it with a balanced liquid fertilizer (shower the liquid right over the top). The plant will grow indoors like a tropical houseplant with moderate light and can be moved outdoors in warm weather.


Method 2: Buying a Pineapple Plant


Pineapple plants may be available in your local garden center or there are also sources online. When growing pineapples, remember that their roots do not like to stay wet. In fact, they like similar soil conditions as cacti: well drained and on the dry side, but with an acidic pH of 4.5-6.5. To determine when to water, the soil should be dry and you should check inside the junctions where the leaves meet the plant. If there is water in those little pockets, then skip watering. If there is no water, then water over the top of the plant. Fertilize monthly with a balanced liquid fertilizer (5-5-5, 10-10-10, etc.) mixed according to the manufacturer's directions, and showered over the plant just like a normal watering.


Method 3: Starting Pineapples From Seed

To start a pineapple from seed, you will first have to obtain the seed. Occasionally there will be seeds in a store-bought pineapple. Buy a yellow-ripe fruit. As you cut the fruit, look for the small black seeds about three-eighths of an inch in from the outside edge. Rinse the seeds. Germinate the seeds by lightly wrapping them in a wet paper towel and placing it in a plastic zipper bag. Keep the bag in a constantly warm (65-75 degrees F) place. It takes about six months for the seeds to sprout, at which time the baby plants can be carefully planted in temporary growing containers (1-2 quart size) where they can be babied until they are large enough to plant in the garden or a permanent larger pot.


Grow a Pineapple Plant


Pineapple plants need ample space, about five feet between plants if growing in-ground or three to five feet in containers. They also grow best in lots of sun (at least 6 hours). Here are a few more pineapple growing tips:


  • Growing Pineapple Outdoors: Pineapples can reliably be grown outdoors only in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 11-12.

  • Growing Pineapple in Containers: Consider keeping the pots outside until freezing temperatures threaten, then moving indoors to the brightest spot in the house (a south facing window is best).

  • Time to Maturity and Fruiting: Regardless of how it was started, a pineapple plant matures at between two and three years of age when it will bear its first fruit. Afterward, it can fruit another time or two at roughly two year intervals before the plant "wears out."

  • Propagation by Suckers: A pineapple in its productive years may "sucker," providing yet more opportunities to start new plants. Suckers are baby plants that can form below the soil, between the leaves or along the flower stalk either below or from the side of the fruit. Any of these suckers may be removed from the parent plant to start new pineapples.


Care for Pineapple Plant


Plant Location


Your pineapple needs bright light or full sun for most of the day. It can handle a bit of shade as long as there’s plenty of light.


Keep the plant away from freezing temperatures. During harsh winters, your might place it in a warm sunny nook created by a large south-facing window.


Water and Fertilizer


Overwatering and overfeeding are the two best ways to kill a pineapple plant. Water only as needed, and feed the plant about once a month with a balanced organic fertilizer at no more than regular strength.


Keep your pineapple plant lightly moist, and never let it become waterlogged or bone dry.


Pineapple Growing Season


Your pineapple plant will do most of its growing during the warm seasons and will slow down when the days get short.


Pineapple Blooming


Like other bromeliads, it can be difficult to get a pineapple to bloom, and it’s not likely to bloom or produce fruit for two to three years.


If it doesn’t bloom on its own, one popular way to induce blooming is to expose the pineapple plant to ethylene gas by enclosing your pineapple plant in plastic with a few overripe apples for a few weeks during the winter.


As the apples decompose, they release ethylene, which stimulates flowering.


Harvesting Pineapples


Once your pineapple plant flowers, it takes several months to grow fruit. Smaller plants will produce smaller pineapples, but they’re just as yummy!


Pick the pineapples when they are evenly ripe and golden yellow.


Pests and Diseases


Pests


Mealybugs and scale: These sap-sucking pineapple pests love pineapple as much as you do, so check the undersides of leaves of your plant regularly. With mealybugs, you’ll notice fluffy, wax-like material building up near the fuzzy looking insects. Scale may be less obvious, since they may be hiding under waxy or cottony covers. Both can be treated the same way, using horticultural oil, either by spraying or dipping the whole plant if mealybugs are present at the base of the plant.


Nematodes: Various nematodes are attracted to pineapples, ultimately resulting in a sickly plant, reduced fruit production and a generally steady decline. Ridding yourself of nematodes is difficult, so it’s best to not encourage them to begin with by using clean, sterile medium for growing pineapples indoors or in a greenhouse. A three year crop rotation with grasses like green foxtail grass are recommended for pineapples in the garden. If you already have nematodes, the best plan of action is to support your plant with good feeding and watering practices, then dispose of it after fruiting, if successful.


Diseases


Top rot and root rot: These two common fungal diseases can be controlled the same way, though they are caused by different pathogens. Root rot’s only visible sign is a plant that looks like it needs to be watered, with drooping leaves and general signs of distress. Top rot may eventually show up as dead leaves around the center of the plant. Both are caused by overwatering or poorly drained soils. Immediately changing watering practices and repotting in clean, dry soil can help with potted plants, outdoor plants will need bed drainage improvements and paper mulching is recommended.


Crookneck: Occurring mainly in plants 12 to 15 months of age or suckers, crookneck is caused by a zinc deficiency in the soil. Heart leaves may become twisted, brittle and yellow-green and the plant itself may bend over and grow in a nearly horizontal position. Eventually, small blisters may form, then develop into gray-brown sunken spots. Treatment is with a one percent solution of zinc sulfate to correct the mineral deficiency.


Benefits of Pineapple


Strengthen Bones


Pineapple is rich in manganese that helps in strengthening your bones. Manganese maintains good bone strength and when it is combined with zinc, copper and calcium this substance can be super healthy. Thus, pineapple has all the components and this is why this fruit can aid in stronger bones.


Hair and Skin Health

Benefits of Pineapple include protecting hair and skin from damage. Sufficient Vitamin C intake can help your body create and maintain collagen an essential protein found in hair and skin. Also, a high vitamin C content helps heal wounds and injuries to the body rapidly.


Fights Infections


Benefits of Pineapple also include fighting against infections. Vitamin C is a powerful natural water soluble antioxidant that helps the body develop resistance against infectious agents and eliminates cancer-causing free radicals in the body. This is done by stimulating the activity of white blood cells and acting as an antioxidant to defend against the harmful effects of free radicals.


Fights Cough and Cold

Pineapples can help fight coughs and colds. Aside from the fighting infections with vitamin C pineapples contain a special enzyme called bromelain that is associated with reducing slam and mucus buildup in the respiratory tracts and sinus cavities.


Improves Digestion

Pineapple Health Benefits include improving digestive health. Pineapples are formidable sources of fiber. Fiber can help prevent constipation, making one's bowel movements easier to manage the daily recommended dietary fiber intake for men and women are 38 grams and 25 grams respectively.


Maintains Blood Pressure

Pineapples can help maintain a healthy blood pressure. Pineapples have a great potassium to sodium ratio. A potassium rich diet helps the blood vessels relax and maintains a healthy blood pressure.


Improves Heart Health

Pineapples can help improve the hearts health. Fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and potassium have been known to improve the heart health.


Improves Brain Health

Pineapples may improve brain health. Several components of pineapples such as potassium folate and various antioxidants are known to provide neurological benefits. Folate has been known to reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer's disease. Potassium has been linked to increase blood flow to the brain and enhanced cognition concentration and neural activity.


Diuretic

Pineapple juice is taken as a diuretic and to expedite labor, also as a gargle in cases of sore throat and as an antidote for seasickness as recommended by Ayurveda. The flesh of very young (toxic) fruits is deliberately ingested to achieve abortion (a little with honey on 3 successive mornings); also to expel intestinal worms; and as a drastic treatment for venereal diseases. In Africa the dried, powdered root is a remedy for edema. The crushed rind is applied on fractures and the rind decoction with rosemary is applied on hemorrhoids. Indians in Panama use the leaf juice as a purgative, emmenagogue and vermifuge.


Good For Teeth


Eating pineapple is said to strengthen your gums and keep your health strong. Your teeth and bones are made up of calcium and pineapple do have good content. It also does have manganese that also helps in strengthening bones and teeth.


Uses

  • Chunks of pineapple are used in desserts such as fruit salad, as well as in some savory dishes, including pizza toppings, or as a grilled ring on a hamburger.

  • The flesh and juice of the pineapple are used in cuisines around the world.

  • Pineapple may also be canned or used to produce juice.

  • Traditional uses include the brewing of pineapple wine, production of fiber.

  • Medicinal use to induce menstruation, induce abortion, kill parasitic amoebas, and expel worms.

  • Crushed pineapple is used in yogurt, jam, sweets, and ice cream.

2 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All