The pineapple (Ananas comosus) is a tropical perennial plant, a bromeliad, native to South America. It is prized for its sweet fruit that can be eaten fresh or used in cooked dishes. Pineapples contain high amounts of manganese and vitamin C and, according to scientists with Colorado State University, there are 2.2g of fiber in 1 cup of the fruit. Growing a pineapple plant at home is easy but it won't produce a pineapple for 20 months or longer.
Hold the pineapple in one hand and gather the leaves in the other hand. The leaves can be sharp, so wear gloves. Twist the leaves until the crown breaks off the pineapple.
Peel off the bottom leaves, working your way around the crown. Around 3/4 inch up the stem you will begin to see root buds or even small roots ringing the stem. Stop peeling the leaves at this point.
Mix together equal parts of potting soil and sand and pour it into the planting pot. Water it until it is saturated and water runs from the drainage holes. Allow the soil to dry completely.
Plant the pineapple crown in the soil up to the bottom leaves. Pack the soil around it so that it sits firmly in the soil. Place the pineapple plant in a sunny spot. The ideal temperature for the pineapple plant is 60 degrees F.
Fertilize the pineapple plant with a liquid houseplant food, at the rate suggested on the package, at the first sign of new growth. Fertilize again three months after that.
Water the pineapple plant twice a week. Water the soil at the base of the plant until water runs out of the bottom of the pot.
Manage any pest problems with insecticidal soap, according to package directions.
Apply fungicide if your pineapple plant shows symptoms of heart rot. This is a fungal disease that will cause the interior leaves to turn black. Pour the fungicide, at the rate suggested on the label, into the center of the plant. You will know that it has stopped the disease when a new shoot begins growing out of the side of the pineapple plant.