How To Grow a Pineapple Plant In Your Home
Want to grow your own pineapple house plant? Here's how.
Pineapples are an exotic, tropical fruit grown mainly in South America and Costa Rica. Just because you don’t live in a tropical climate doesn’t mean you can’t grow your own pineapple plant. Planting your own pineapple plant is a fairly simple project, even if you’re relatively new to houseplants. All you need is some potting soil, a pot and one fresh pineapple.
Best Conditions for Pineapple Plants
Oh, and sunlight. For a pineapple plant to grow, it will need around six hours of sunlight a day. Pineapple plants don’t require constant tropical temperatures to thrive, but they do need some level of consistent warmth. If you live in a humid and warm year-round climate, you can leave your pineapple plant outside. Otherwise, your pineapple plant will need to be kept inside your home, at least during the winter months.
How to Grow a Pineapple Plant
In order to grow a pineapple plant, the main thing you need is the healthy crown of a ripe pineapple.
Buy your starter pineapple
Go to the grocery store and look for the ripest pineapple you can find. Pineapple ripeness is indicated by the outside of the fruit turning from green to yellow, so keep an eye out for a pineapple with as much bright yellow coloring as possible. Depending on the time of year, the selection of pineapples at your local store may not be the ripest. That’s fine. You can just take a green, unripe pineapple home and throw it in a paper bag to speed up the ripening process. Also, be sure to check that the leaves of your pineapple’s crown are healthy and in good shape.
Remove and prepare the crown
Once your pineapple is ripe enough, it’s time to harvest the crown. The riper your pineapple is, the easier removing its crown will be. To remove the crown, put on a pair of gardening gloves, grab the crown firmly with one hand and gently twist it away from the main body of the fruit. If your pineapple is ripe enough the crown should come away cleanly with little effort.
After you’ve removed the crown from the pineapple, set the rest of the fruit aside. Take the crown and trim away any excess fruit or leaves from its base. Then strip off the lowest rungs of stems from the crown to expose the stem.
Drying the crown
Once it has been removed from the rest of the fruit and cleaned it’s time to “cure” your pineapple crown. This is a pretty uninvolved process. Just put the pineapple crown in a dry location where it won’t be disturbed and let it sit for at least a couple of days and up to a week if necessary. That should give your pineapple plant starter plenty of time to fully dry out.
Soaking the crown
This next step might seem counterintuitive after you’ve just spent a week drying your pineapple crown. By fully submerging the bottom of the crown’s stem in warm water, you promote healthy root growth in your pineapple plant. Place the crown in a mason jar so its leaves are out of the water but its stem can soak. Leave the stem of your pineapple crown underwater for a week (changing out the water every few days) and you’ll start to notice roots emerging from the stem. Once those roots are over a couple of inches long, you can plant your pineapple plant.
Planting the crown
Partially fill your pot with planting soil then place the pineapple crown inside. Pack in more potting soil until the stem of the crown and any roots are completely covered.
Nurturing the plant
For the first few days, you’ll want to keep your potted pineapple plant in indirect light until its roots have a chance to take hold in the soil. Make sure that the soil is watered consistently, and if you live in a particularly dry climate regularly mist the plant itself. If things go well, you should start to see some new, healthy leaves sprout up from your pineapple plant. Once the roots have fully grown into the soil, move the plant into a spot where it will be exposed to direct sunlight.
When Will Pineapple Plants Produce Fruit?
It can take several years for a homegrown pineapple plant to produce fruit. Once your plant is ready to produce fruit it will start flowering. A red cone will appear at the center of its leaves and blue flowers around that. Eventually, a healthy pineapple plant will produce a full pineapple. Some patience may be required, though.