Gardeners with a pineapple patch know the enjoyment of picking a juicy bright yellow to orange fruit fresh from the garden. Growing pineapples is a Florida tradition started by settlers during the late 1800's. You can plant a pineapple patch too - it?s easy.
Locally it's pineapple picking time for many gardeners. The plants that flowered in spring are now ripening. It's not the biggest but pictured is one ready to harvest from my patch. You can bet it is going to be sweet and juicy too.
Most modern pineapple plantings start as a top saved from a grocery store fruit or one grown in your own yard. Just twist the cluster of foliage off the top, remove a few lower leaves and plant it in a container of potting soil. The pineapple does the rest with just the following care.
- Keep the plant in a pot until rooted; then plant in the garden or a larger container.
- Pineapples are drought tolerant but grow best with weekly waterings.
- Feed container grown plants every other week and in ground plantings monthly during warm weather with a garden fertilizer.
- Create a 2- to 3-inch mulch layer among in ground plantings.
- Protect from severe cold with covers or by moving container plantings to a warm location.
Pineapple plants make slow but steady growth. Most flower in two years usually in March and produce an edible fruit in August. Plants then produce additional shoots. Leave one attached to the plant to continue growth and use the others to start more plantings.