A Tropical Apple

A Florida Pineapple

It’s not really an apple. It’s a bromeliad with a fruit…a pineapple.  Explorers gave the pineapple its name in 1664 because they thought it looked like a pine cone.  The pineapple (Ananas comosus) grows on a thick stem and has really sharp edges on its leaves.  I find weeding around them to be perilous and I dread doing it.  I feel like I’ve been bitten when a spiky edge gets me. The pain is worth it though because there is nothing better than a fresh, homegrown pineapple. To me, it has a pina colada flavor.   I have seen the plants with their leaves cut off to prevent them from biting.  I think it looks a little weird but I’m sure it’s practical when growing thousands of them for the market. 


The pineapple is easy to grow in warm, sunny areas.  It can easily grow in a pot too.  The next time you buy a pineapple at the grocery store and cut it up to eat, make sure you save the top.  Just trim the meat off the top (under the leaves) and stick it into the soil where you decide you want your plant to grow.  It really is that easy.  My grandmother told me that I have to cut the meat off the top and root it in water before I plant it in the soil.  To be honest, I just slice off the top and stick it into the ground…meat and all.  I’ve never lost a single plant.  We’ve devoured about fifty of our own homegrown pineapples.    

Pineapple in a pot on a patio.

To grow a pineapple at home takes patience.  The plant can take up to 3 years to produce a fruit that is ready to harvest.  I have read that it will fruit in two years but it takes three  in my yard (in Southwest Florida).  If patience isn’t one of your virtues, the fruiting process can be induced artificially.  You Grow Girl  gives a good suggestion for inducing the fruit at home. 

One of my young pineapples.

Pineapple is high in vitamin C and contains an enzyme called bromelain which is known to break down protein.  Raw pineapple should not be eaten by people with liver or kidney problems, nor should it be eaten by hemophiliacs because it can interfere with platelet function. 

A pineapple garden in front of Morocco at Epcot, Disney World.

A young "dwarf pineapple" in a pot. The fruit is just as yummy, but less of it.

This path leads to my mom's pineapple patch on the left.

If you cut the top off the fruit and plant it each time you buy a pineapple at the supermarket, you will have plants that will give you fruit at different times.  Wouldn’t that be a wonderful surprise from your landscaping?  We love edible landscaping in our yard.  Another plus… your dog will probably stay out of this landscaping. 

Come grow with us! 

6 Responses to “A Tropical Apple”

  1. Hi the possible reasons for your plant taking so long is it needs really good soil they need urea magnesium boron and a little water depending how dry it is to make the fuit get size.If you go to you local rural shop you can get a chemical called ethrel and you mix with urea and boron spray on the plant and it will force it to flower.They also have really big root systems and need drainage that is why they are planted up on beds those pots are way too small for you pineapples.If your soil stays too wet you will end up with phytofra which is a microscopic but that swims through the soil and eats the roots of the plant.

    • Hi Garry, thank you for taking the time to provide all that great information. I plant my pineapples in the ground. The photo of the pineapple in the small pot was taken at my fathers house. I didn’t realize their root systems were so big…good to know.

  2. Lynda D. Says:

    This is a wonderful page!! Thanks for the info 🙂

  3. All of these elements make up the structure of your project.
    Some flowers, such as lupines, provide extra nitrogen to the surrounding soil for other plants to use when they either while they are growing,
    go dormant or die out. Such dual services might be a gateway to bigger discounts.

  4. My dwarf looks really good. I was pleased to find all your information. i like your page’

  5. Bertha Jerabek Says:

    How long does it take the fruit to be ready to eat on a pineapple plantt that is in a pot.?

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