Starting A Pineapple Plant

Starting a pineapple plant from a top is easy. Growing pineapples from slips or even seeds is simple too. Lots of pineapple pictures show you exactly what to do.

Starting A Pineapple Plant By Planting A Pineapple Top

Starting a pineapple plant from a pineapple top is easy. First, you have to remove the top from the ripe fruit. The best way is to wrap your fist (careful, the leaves are sharp) around the base of the top and twist it off.

Do this when you're ready to eat the pineapple as the fruit will decay more quickly without its top.

Now, you can either place the top in water--just enough to cover the little root bumps--or you can stick it directly into a pot of soil.

I've had great results both ways.

Next, you need to remove the lower leaves.

They peel right off. Keep going until you see a few rows of little bumps.

Those little bumps are the beginnings of roots.

I've even put pineapple tops directly into the ground in late spring and had success with that method as well.

Pineapple plants are tough. You could even leave the top laying on your kitchen table while you spend the weekend in the Bahamas and root it when you get back. It'll be fine.

How do I know this? Don't ask.

If you start it in water, remember to change the water every couple of days. You'll have roots in about a week.

Rooted pineapple top.

Now, it's ready to go into the ground or a pot of soil.

Growing Pineapples From Slips

Each pineapple plant will bear just one fruit in its life. However, before the original plant dies it will send up one or more suckers or slips.

These slips can arise out of the soil very close to the base of the original plant or they can emerge from the stalk that bore the fruit. So, after you pick the fruit, don't remove the plant. Just continue to care for (or neglect) it as you always have. The slips will appear over the next few months.

Once the slips show up, let them gain some size.

Once they're about a foot tall, remove the slips by cutting them away from the original plant at the base. Place them directly into prepared soil, the same as you would if you were planting a pineapple top.

Growing Pineapples: Should You Separate the Slips

This page discusses the pros and cons of separating pineapple slips from the mother plant.

Planting Pineapple Seeds


Pineapple Plants for Sale Here

Growing a pineapple from seed is an exercise in patience, but here's how to do it:

  • When you cut up a ripe pineapple, you will sometimes find little black seeds down near the bottom of the fruit. To sprout them, place the pineapple seeds in the smallest glass jar you can find. Use one with a lid and sterilize it first.
  • Rinse the seeds off to remove any pineapple juice and put them into the jar. Screw the lid on and place the jar in a warm spot with light but no direct sun. I put mine on top of the microwave.
  • Pineapple seeds take weeks to sprout. If you are patient, you will see a tiny white shoot emerge from most of the seeds. That's a root. In a few more weeks a green shoot will join the white shoot.

This is the point at which I lost interest in this experiment. It just takes too long. All the while you're trying to keep the moisture level in the jar just right. Too little and the seeds dry out. Too much and mold sets in.

I'll stick to starting a pineapple plant with a top or a slip.

But you're not a quitter like me. You want to continue growing the seedlings:

  • When they are about an inch tall, transfer them into soil. Use a container with a clear plastic dome type lid. Like the ones ice cream sundaes come in.
  • Use tweezers to transplant the tiny seedlings. Grow them on in filtered sun. Feed them a very weak liquid fertilizer each week. When they become crowded, shift them into individual pots. They should be big enough by then not to need a plastic cover.

It will take much longer to get big plants this way, but you will have the satisfaction of watching the pineapple plants grow from tiny seedlings into three foot wide adults.

And who knows what new cultivar you might discover. Seeds are a result of insect pollination and foster genetic diversity in plants. You could end up growing a white pineapple, or a red pineapple. Or one with beautiful striped leaves.

All because you decided to accept the challenge of starting a pineapple plant from seed.

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Delicious Pineapple Recipe

My mother-in-law's coconut cake.

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