Feb 162015

Pineapples on display at Maria's fruit and vegetable stand in San Pedro Belize. For more information on how to pick a pineapple to purchase, where the pineapple gets it's name, how to grow a pine apple and a tip for a juicier pineapple get more information at https://billdoesbelize.com/pineapples-maybe-more-than-you-wanted-to-know/Pineapples, Fruit or Vegetable?

Pineapples are strange, they don’t follow the rules normally used to determine if something is a fruit or a vegetable. Unlike most fruits by definition, it is developed from the flower of the plant, it does not grow on a tree and does not contain seeds. However it is classified as a fruit and when ripe will turn a golden orange like the pineapple on the top of the pile, at the left side of the table pictured.

How to pick pineapples to buy.

When you pick a pineapple, the first thing to determine is when you will want to eat the pineapple. If you will eat it that day you will want the golden orange one from the top left of the pile. The ones on the bottom of the pile in the center are from two days to a week away.

A little tip: For juicier pineapples, Turn them upside down for 24 hours before slicing.

Why are they called Pineapples?

As we have already discovered pineapples do not grow on a tree like a typical fruit (other than a berry), so it does not grow on a pine tree or on an apple tree. Where did it get it’s name? Well, when the Spanish first saw one it reminded them of a pine cone and they named it Pina, later the English added apple because of it’s sweet taste and the pineapples name stuck.

Where do pineapples come from?

“Pineapple have no seeds”, you may say, so where do they come from? In order to grow a pineapple, you need a pineapple. You will remove the top bushy part, plant in loose soil with aggregate to aid in draining, keep moist, not soaked (it will rot) for two weeks to help the rooting process, but then only add water when it gets dry. After about 18 months the plant should be about 4 ft. high and 4 ft. around with a flower in the center, the flower will become a pineapple over the next six months. Yes, if you do the math a pineapples take almost two years to grow.

Usually one pineapple will yield one pineapple (some people say a second is possible the next year, but never a third). Once you harvest your fruit you will start again with it’s top and can repeat this process up to nine times before the pineapples produced become bitter.

Pineapples are easy to grow.

Anyone can grow pineapples, and don’t worry about the shape the top is in, it will grow. Even in colder climates like that of Canada it will grow inside, just use a good size pot to avoid transplanting later. If you would like to try and grow your own, I have provided this video link.

Since moving to Belize I have eaten a lot of pineapples and love the tangy but sweet taste. I particularly enjoy pineapple pieces with banana slices, for me it’s an unbeatable combination. So grow your own and try it, then let me know how you made out.