Pineapple is a delicious fruit found in the tropics. Cultivated since the 10th century it has many health benefits and commercial value.
The fruit is seasonal, attracts premium prices and in huge demand. The business is lucrative but requires adequate land space and labor. Make sure you provide water, good stock and funding.
Pineapple Farm Diseases
The most vulnerable to attack are the young crown plantings and suckers. Common signs are brownish or yellow leaves or white leaf tissues at the base. Others include brownish fruitlets, green eye, stem resetting.
Invasive organisms cause rot, spread of disease and survive in soils for extended periods. Some causes are poorly drained soil, chlamydospores, fungus and fruitlet core rot. More are green fruit rot, white leaf spots, water-blister and rot-knot nematodes.
- Fruitlet core rot
- Green fruit rot
- White leaf spots
- Rot-knot nematodes
Types of Pineapples
Pineapples are divided into for characteristics. We have the red Spanish, queen, cayenne and Abacaxi.
The Abacaxi features a near translucent flesh rich and juicy taste. It come in different varieties are ether round or conical in shape. They are fragile, disease resistant and not suitable for export or long haulage.
The Cayenne referred to a smooth cayenne are heavy with low fiber flesh. They have striped leaves are ideal for canning and commercial fruit juice production. They are very sweet to taste, juice, devoid of acidic taste common to pineapple. The fruit is popular in many Asian countries, Africa and India.
The red Spanish despite its name has yellowish fruits, fiber rich and delicate. The fruit has large varieties, strong stem, narrow leaves and sometimes whitish/purple skinned fruits. It is noted for its strong aromatic smell and popular in Mexico, West Indies, Costa Rica and Venezuela.
The queen is a dwarf variety that is compact and disease resistant. They poses a small core, have fragrant fruits and are dark yellow in color. Popular in South Africa they have broad leaves, fleshy fruit and generally eaten raw.
Pineapple Plant Varieties
- The queen
- Red Spanish
How to Grow Pineapple Plant
To start buy the fresh pineapple according to the type popular in your area. Make sure it is fleshy, ripe, evenly shaped with green leaves. Avoid those that have dull coloration, over-ripe or diseases. What you need is the genetic marker of that particular fruit for best results.
The next step is to eat the fruit and slice off the crown. Make sure the knife is clean to avoid contaminants and cut evenly. Make sure you remove all fleshy fruit and rind.
Slice the stalk to reveal brownish dot rings called the root primordial. The root primordial are the unformed roots to plant, then remove leaves from the stalk. Dry out the cut end for the wound to heal and stalk dry.
After a few days you are now going to plant the pineapple stalk. Plant in a pot with adequate draining and soil composition. Avoid the use of fertilizer and water lightly to add moisture in the soil.
The plant would root within 3 months and replant the firmly rooted plant. Make sure the plants are well spaced for the pineapples to grow.
How to Remove the Ripe Pineapple
The plant fruits once in 2 years then dies a natural death. The plant generally produces small offsets that become new plants. Removing the pineapple the proper way would allow the farmer produce more plants from the parent plant.
To remove grasp the fruit with gloved hand and cut the stem. Look for the small offshoot plants and cut from main plant and transplant. Water them lightly and ensure adequate sunlight.
How to Care for the Pineapple Plant
Prepare the soil and makes sure it has adequate sunlight. Then make sure the soil is moist but not water logged or they will die. The plant is seasonal so grow at start of the season.
It takes 2 to 3 years for the plant to bloom and you can stimulate the bloom. Harvest when they have flowers and produce evenly ripe fruit. Look out for an even golden yellow color before harvesting.
To increase your farm yield you can grow new pineapple by rooting the plants or remove small shoots at the base of the plant. Make sure the leave roots grow before removing and transplanting.