pineapple-harvest

Pineapple Harvest

Growing a ripe pineapple is the pinnacle of delayed gratification. The fruits may take up to 18 months to mature depending on climate. Not to mention each plant produces one fruit. In the tropics, you can start a pineapple garden. Once you've got plenty in the ground, it's possible to have fresh pineapples all year long.

About Pineapples

The pineapple is the world’s most favorite bromeliad. This sweet fruit grows in the tropical regions of Southeast Asia and South America. Pineapples are native to South America, Costa Rica and Brazil are still the leading producers.

Unfortunately, most of the production in these countries is heavily industrialized. Biodiversity is discouraged, and pesticide use is very high. Chemicals affect the wellbeing of residents, water sources, and employees in the area. These are great reasons to grow pineapples for yourself.

When To Pick

Use several methods to determine if your pineapple is ripe and ready for picking.

  • Shape: Pineapple has taken an overall shape, good size, and fruitlets have flattened.
  • Color: Fruit has turned from green to yellow starting at the bottom and working upward.
  • Smell: Smells strongly of sweet citrus and floral, ripe pineapple smell.
  • Sound: A ripe pineapple will sound hollow when tapped with a finger.

Pineapples grown in the warm season will mature and ripen faster than pineapples grown in the cool season. The final size of the pineapple depends on the cultivar, quality of growing conditions, and method of original propagation. Typically, pineapples gain significant weight in their days leading up to maturity.

Overripe or rotting pineapples will have a fermenting smell. They will be bronze or red in color, and the skin will be thin and mushy.

How To Pick A Pineapple

Some gardeners claim that you can twist a pineapple off of its base. It may work sometimes but is not recommended because it risks damaging the plant. Pineapples are perennial producers that will grow fruits year after year so avoid damaging the plant.

Use a sharp knife to cut the pineapple off at the base where it connects to the plant. It’s a good idea to sanitize the knife first. This prevents the spread of fungus, bacteria, or pest eggs.

Picking A Pineapple At The Grocery Store

It’s similar to picking a ripe pineapple in the field. Use your senses and smell the fruit for sweet floral notes. Listen to it when you tap for a hollow sound. Choose pineapples that are yellow, not green although green fruits will ripen on the counter.

Storage

Store ripe fruit in the refrigerator for up to a week. Unripe fruits should be left on the counter to ripen.