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Grow Pineapples In A Small Space

Grow Pineapples On Your Balcony

Will I be sipping Pina Coladas in two years time? 

Well, you know that I'm not averse to having a go at growing most anything up here on the balcony...Corn, Blueberries and Grapes have been successful...so why not Pineapples?

All my research points to a pretty easy fruit to grow, as long as conditions are optimal so a few months ago in mid-Summer, I rooted an organic Pineapple top in water for a few weeks and popped it into a 16L Root Pouch grow bag. Growth has been slow but we are after all in the colder months now, however I am happy to report that new leaves have grown and it seems firmly rooted in the bag! Pick a Pineapple that is organic and firm with green leaves. The pineapple should be ripe, it needs to be ripe to be able to produce another Pineapple (but not overripe) . From my experience and research it's pretty simple so here is what I have discovered...

Step 1: twist or cut off the top of the 🍍

I cut mine before I was told to twist - doesn't seem to make a difference.

Strip off some of the lower leaves which will help it to sprout - leave a few centimetres of stem exposed.

Dry it for a week so that the scar where you cut/twist hardens

Step 2: heal the scar 🍍 

Dry it for a week so that the scar where you cut/twist hardens

Step 3: plant into soil or rest in water 🍍

When the scar has hardened you can plant it directly into the soil, my preferred method with any cutting is to let it develop roots in water which I think makes for a stronger cutting as it has the ability to draw nutrients straight away once planted.

If following my method, pop it into a glass of water with a few millimetres of tap water or rain water. Maintain  this level of water as it drinks it away. Soon you will see roots develop. Allow it to develop a good network of roots over a few weeks or months.

Step 4: pot up into a container 🍍

Plant the crown when the roots are a few centimetres long . 

Pineapples like a free draining soil and do not need much soil or high quality soil either. They belong to a family known as Bromeliads which do not have large root systems. They like it slightly acidic so check your soil pH.

Step 5: water requirements 🍍

Pineapples don't need a lot of water. their leaves are tough and they don't lose much through evaporation and can get by with what I've observed as very little. However, don't let them dry out!  An Olla with the 🍍 will allow the plant to draw whatever water it requires so no guesswork is involved with this tropical plant. 

See below for the Waterpot Olla that will solve this problem for you and are in the webstore!

Waterpot Ollas  - Water Solution

Waterpot Ollas take the guesswork out of irrigating your plants

Irrigation with Ollas

Bury, fill and be confident that your plant is receiving all the water it requires...when it requires!

Step 6: 🌞requirements

They generally require full sun but I have also read that they can do ok in dappled shade. They need a sunny, warm spot where there's hopefully some humidity and temps don't fall below 18 degrees. You may like to move it to more comfortable conditions which is the beauty of having them grow in pots and containers.

Mine are in Root Pouch grow bags and are in the webstore

Feed during its active growth period (Summer)

Gardening with Root Pouch bags

Root Pouch grow bags can be used for all types of vegetables, ornamental, shrubs and trees!

Portable Root Pouch bags

Easy to shift around using the two strong handles. 

Step 7: be patient

It can take several years for a reddish cone of flower to appear in the centre, followed by I understand is a blue flower and then fruit and then another 6 months for the fruit to develop in the centre from the flower. That's a long wait but if you have a ittle corner that fits the plant requirements then why not give it a go?

Remember . . . with all things considered such as space, time and expense . . .  growing is about the journey! If you have a need for speed get your food from the grocery store (preferably organic!)

The Joy of Growing Pineapples by California Gardening USA

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