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Growing pineapple

I cut the top off a pineapple and it rooted quite quickly in some potting mix. I usually keep it in a warm, bright conservatory, but I put it outside over summer in a sheltered area with dappled light, which suits my other bromeliads. It is no longer thriving. How should I care for it from now on? I have heard of people who have managed to get pineapples to fruit in Auckland. What conditions are needed for this?


PINEAPPLES prefer more tropical conditions than most of the bromeliads we grow outdoors here, but with care you can get them to fruit. They need plenty of sun and excellent drainage as they cannot tolerate wet roots during cool weather.

I recommend you bring it back into your conservatory for the winter and always allow the mix to dry out before watering. If the potting mix you used has slow-release fertiliser in it, you probably won't need to feed it again until spring, unless your conservatory is particularly warm and the plant is growing well.

Next summer, try putting it back outdoors in a warm, dry, well-lit spot, such as against a sunny wall. It will take several years to reach fruiting size, so be patient and remember to go easy on the water.

Weekend Gardener, Issue 173, 2005, Page 28

Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.

Andrew Maloy Weekend Gardener

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Last updated: October 25, 2005