Whether it’s cut slices or freshly extracted juice, pineapple remains a favourite among many in all forms of consumption. The scrumptious fruit is often spotted in a variety of dishes – in your morning salad, in cocktails or even on pizza. But its distinct flavour is not the fruit’s only excellent characteristic.
Pineapples, also known as ananas, contain upto 86% water and are high in nutrients that promote health. The fruit has been known to provide various benefits including aiding digestion, boosting immunity, and providing high energy.
Did you know that pineapples are also capable of regenerating themselves? Interestingly, this fruit can be grown at home using its top part, known as the crown. So instead of letting the top half of the fruit go to waste, you can use it to grow more right in your backyard.
Pineapple is a tropical plant that is best grown during months of spring. It forms as a cluster of fruits blooming from individual flowers of the plant.
Akash Jaiswal, a home gardener, tells The Better India how to plant the much loved pineapple at home for daily consumption.
How to grow pineapple at home
To grow a plant from a store-bought pineapple, Akash says, it is important to choose the right piece. The leaves on the pineapple should be intact and fresh. To begin the planting process, remove the crown from the top of the fruit. This is the part that the new plant grows from.
- First, pluck the leaves from the base of the crown. This reveals the cylindrical stem that is present in the center of the fruit.
- After cleaning the base, leave it in the open for any excess liquid to drain out of the fruit.
- Once dried, the crown is soaked in a bowl of water. “Roots begin shooting from the base of the crown. However it’s best to leave the fruit in for 10 to 15 days for satisfactory results, says Akash.
- During this period, it is important to keep changing the water every three days.
- Once the sapling is ready with roots, it’s time to transplant it. This can be done either in a large pot or directly in the soil. Aakash explains, “If you’re using a pot, it is extremely important to ensure that it is big enough. The ideal size of a pot to grow pineapple is between 14 inches and 18 inches. If the pot is small, the plant will fail to bear fruit.”
- For the purpose of transplanting, a mix of 50% normal garden soil, 20% vermi compost or dung compost, and 30% red sand is recommended. He explains that the red sand provides excessive drainage in the soil, which works in favour of the pineapple plant.
It takes around six months for the pineapple or ananas plant to mature. During this time, a few things should be kept in mind to ensure your plant grows to be healthy:
- “If red sand is not easily available, you can use coco peat in its place for the same results”, Akash suggests.
- He also recommends replenishing this soil with compost every 15 days for nutrients.
- Pineapple is a sturdy plant, and does not require excessive watering. Water the plant normally.
- Akash advises that at the rooting stage, the baby plant should be kept in shade. However when it is ready to be placed in the ground, the plant should be placed under direct sunlight.
Feature Image Source: Pixabay
Edited by Divya Sethu