Growing Pineapple Plants
Growing pineapple plants is simple and fun. I'll show you how to grow a pineapple from top to sweet, juicy fruit in less than 2 years.
Pineapples can be reluctant fruiters. Here's how to speed bloom.
This is a pineapple plant I started from a top last year. If you want to start a pineapple plant from a top the following link has pictures to show you how:
Starting A Pineapple Plant
How To Grow A Pineapple
Pineapple plants like a lot of sun. They will grow in high shade as well, but the fruit will take much longer to develop. One of the plants in my yard is in the shade. This is sometimes a problem when winter comes before the fruit is ready to harvest. I protect it with blankets.
This is about all I can do because once a pineapple plant grows to maturity, it is very risky to move it.
Because of the amount of light pineapple plants need to produce fruit, they don't make good houseplants. Their size also tends to become a problem indoors. A mature pineapple will easily grow to measure three feet across.
They do adapt well to pot culture and pineapples make beautiful container plants. Just give them plenty of space. A sunny patio or a bright screen room is a perfect environment for them.
Feeding And Watering Pineapple Plants
The greatest danger to growing pineapple plants (outside of frost) is the overzealous gardener.
They don't need or want too much water or food.
They tolerate dry soil quite nicely after they are established. But I would be careful to keep them moist--not wet--until then. Too much water will cause the plants to rot.
Here in Florida, we sometimes have torrential rains. My pineapple plants accept these occasional deluges in their stride because the soil they are in is sandy and the water drains away quickly.
How to Provoke a Pineapple Plant into Producing Fruit
To get fruit, you will need to feed the plants regularly. Use a liquid fertilizer. I use Miracle Grow 15-30-15. Pour it into the cup formed by the leaves. You can also pour it on the soil around the base of the plants if you want to.
Do this every 4 - 6 weeks until a fruit begins to develop. I feed my plants for the last time when they flower. I don't remember where I heard this, but I've been doing it for years and I get delicious fruit from my plants every season.
Once the plant is old enough to fruit (1 year or more), start checking the cup periodically. It will turn bright red when it's ready to send up an inflorescence.
This is a slow process.
You can speed it up by placing a small piece of fruit inside the cup once it turns red. I have a calamondin orange tree so I usually use one of those. An apple quarter would do just as well.
The fruit emits a gas that encourages the pineapple to bloom more quickly. It's the same gas that speeds ripening in bananas.
More Pineapple Growing Info: