Tuesday, June 09, 2015

I'm growing a pineapple

Many years ago, while shopping in IKEA, I spotted a potted pineapple plant with a tiny pineapple and decided to buy it. I had it outside on my patio for a little while, but became concerned that a critter would eat it, so I took it to my office. It was a novelty, for sure. In a few weeks, or so, it turned yellow and I broke it off, washed and cut it, and ate it—all four bites! It tasted good. You can see a photo of it here, the blog entry I wrote about back in 2008.

Knowing a pineapple could grow in a pot, I googled how to start one. It sounded pretty simple: cut the top off a pineapple that you buy in a grocery store. Take this top, or crown, and plunk it on top of a pot filled with potting soil, and water it. In a couple of weeks, it will have taken root, Continue to water it as you would any house plant. Well, I started one. After some time, I noticed a new top was forming on top of the one I had planted. I kept watering it. Eventually, the leaves of the original top died and I cut them off, leaving a new plant that kept growing and growing.

One day my boss said I should transfer it to a bigger pot. He had one I could use, so he helped me re-pot it. This must have been six or seven years ago—I can't really remember. Well, the plant kept growing and growing and was taking up a considerable amount of space on our work counter. Here is what it looked like:

When I returned from Japan in February, my boss said we should consider finding a new place for the plant because it was really in the way. I told him I'd start to look around for a new space.

The next day, while watering it, I spotted something brown down in the center of it.

I was so excited. "Paul, come and look," I exclaimed. "My plant is growing a pineapple!" This was in late February of this year.

By March 13, the little pineapple had begun to grow and the supporting stem stretched up, making the pineapple visible.

As you can see, the supporting leaves are still erect, surrounding the pineapple. Also, there is only the inkling of a crown on the fruit.

This photo, taken March 24, shows a top sprouting up, and the little "circles" are forming flowers—little purple flowers. There is one flower per "circle." [The technical name is coalesced berries.]

On April 14, I took this photo. The flowers have stopped blooming and the top is getting larger.

I took this photo May 4. The fruit and the crown are getting bigger. Also, the lower supporting leaves from the original plant are beginning to lay down as their nutrition is no longer needed. I wish I would have measured the circumference at this time.

This last photo was taken today. The top is definitely getting taller, and the fruit is getting bigger. I measured the circumference today with dental floss and it measures just over 11 inches. I began a chart to track the growth of the fruit. The pineapple can easily be seen while walking up to the building (The office is on the second floor.).

1 comment:

Heidi said...

Very neat! Are you going to replant it?