A Nest for All Seasons A Nest for All Seasons: How to Plant a Supermarket Pineapple Top (Easy!)

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23 January 2012

How to Plant a Supermarket Pineapple Top (Easy!)

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So you buy a pineapple at the grocery store, eat all the goodness up and have tons of rind leftover. You throw the pineapple top in the trash, and you feel a little twinge of guilt as all that weight hits the bottom of the can. You throw it in the compost and you feel much better, but you still feel like you are missing out on an opportunity. Why? Because you are throwing away a pineapple! That pineapple top can usually grow a whole new plant if you give it soil and water and light, and this time of year is the PERFECT time to give your pineapple a head start on the growing season.  The roots begin to develop before the leaves and fruit, so growing your pineapple indoors while it is getting established and then allowing the pineapple to have more light before it fruits (this summer) works perfectly!


It's really simple...just chop the top of the pineapple off with a decent amount of core still left on it.

Experts say you should let it sit out a day or so, but I just plop it right into the soil.

I plant mine in a pot and move in from indoors to out, but if you are in zone 9 or 10, 
or it is summertime for you, feel free to plant your pineapple straight into the ground.

Dig a hole, hold the soil to the side and drop the pineapple in with the spiky hair pointing UP!
The soil should nestle right in around the bottom of the first set of leaves.


Pat the soil down around the plant to settle it in. (It IS a plant now, no longer just a pineapple :)
Water it in as you would any new transplant.  Too much water will flood it, but it needs a little to settle in.


Wait a few months and you'll likely have a brand new pineapple!




UPDATE  |  Several weeks later...

After a few weeks, the leaves will start to look a little sad, but this is ok!  
Just look for new growth near the center of the plant and be patient!  The bottom of the pineapple is very very busy!
Leave these leaves on until they become completely brown, as they are photosynthesizing energy for the root system.



UPDATE  |  Several months later...

See those bright green leaves?  They are brand new leaves that have grown with no help from me.  A little water once in awhile and a little leftover coffee as "fertilizer" and the pineapple top has taken care of itself!  Most of the old leaves have fallen off, but if you look closely, you can see a few left at the the very bottom of the pot.  By the time spring and summer roll around, this plant will be more than ready to head outdoors!

NOTE:  Many supermarket plants are hybrids and don't grow true from seed.  Planting a piece of the original plant however, (like this pineapple top) ensures that the fruit that grows will be just like the parent plant.  There are many naysayers on whether pantry and grocery store "chunks" and roots will grow, but I've found a lot of success with them.  You have nothing to lose, but the most minimal of time.  It is fun for you and GREAT fun for the kids.


How is that for a nifty new houseplant?  Better than the common, spiky mother-in-law's tongue, yes??  What do you have to lose?   If you want a little green in your window, just pop that pineapple top into a little soil!  At the very least, you have a new houseplant for free.  At the most, you will have a pineapple plant that grow large enough to produce fruit year after year!  Alternatively, you can plant sprouting potatoes from your pantry, beet and turnip tops, leek roots, green onion roots and many more plants from grocery store and pantry "trash".   What do YOU grow from the trash?







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13 COMMENTS:

Dawn Braun Monday, January 23, 2012  

such a cool post, I had no idea that my favorite fruit could be made into a snazzy plant! Thanks, am going to have to try this!! :)

Andrea Monday, January 23, 2012  

Hi Amy, yes this is getting the most from your pineapple from the grocery. I've planted many crowns this way, and some more additional thrills of anticipation for waiting and for finding the fruits later will be exciting. However, do you know that crowns bring fruits longer than when you plant slips? This are the young plantlet at the bottom of the fruits. They fruit earlier than the crown.

Amy Renea Monday, January 23, 2012  

I didn't know that!!! I'll try that next time - thanks!

Nessa Bixler Tuesday, January 24, 2012  

I can 't believe that seriously works!! Wow!

Anonymous Tuesday, February 21, 2012  

I live in a part of the country that can have somewhat harsh winters (Northern Missouri), will this harm the plant after I transplant it into the ground outside?

Amy Renea Tuesday, February 21, 2012  

You would only be able to plant the pineapple in the ground during the summers. You can transfer it from a pot to the ground after any chance of frost (probably around the end of May -- are you zone 4??) or after the forsythia bushes have dropped their flowers. Alternatively, you can just move the pot outside around that time. Make sure you take the pineapple inside in the fall if there is any chance of frost. It will definitely not survive!

Sarah Friday, April 20, 2012  

Hey, are there any updated pics? I would love to see them. I like your method. The triming and trying to root the pineapple in a glass of water has been a real waste of time for me. THANK YOU!

Sarah Friday, April 20, 2012  

Any new pics to add? I would love to see them. This method seems to make the most sense to me. I have had no luck trying to grow a pineapple by trimming the fruit off and trying to root it in a glass of water. Thank you!

Brandi Adams Sunday, September 30, 2012  

The first two times I tried this, I had no luck! =( But, I didn't want to give up. The last pineapple I bought, I planted it and the leaves did get a little brown but there weren't falling out! I didn't have any new growth in the middle of the plant but this afternoon while I was watering, I noticed that it had a new growth coming out the side of the plant!! YAY! I'm so excited by this.

Amy Renea Monday, October 01, 2012  

YAY! That is awesome Brandi -- I feel your JOY! :)

Molly Pedersen Wednesday, February 11, 2015  

Did you water it after you planted it?

Amy Renea Tuesday, February 17, 2015  

yes, water in lightly as you would any transplant! Thanks for the questions!

Mark Friday, July 22, 2016  

Good article, but twist the top off - don't cut it off. The fruit attached to the top is unnecessary and will increase the chance of rotting. Also, it takes about 2 years to get fruit from a pineapple top, so the timing is a bit off.

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