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Propagating Pineapple: Planting a Pineapple Top

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Even if you don’t live in the tropics, it’s possible to propagate pineapple plants from tops of pineapples! Propagating pineapple is relatively easy and it’s a great gardening activity to try with the kids.

Growing a new pineapple plant from the top of a purchased pineapple seems is worth the time spent on it, in my humble opinion. Most gardeners seem to attempt rooting the tops for pineapple propagation.

Although, I’ve also tried growing pineapple seeds, with mixed results.

For the quickest results, learn how to root a pineapple so you can grow your own tropical plant at home!

Propagating Pineapple Tops - Cut pineapple top on a cutting board
Propagating Pineapple Tops – Cut pineapple top on a cutting board

You can also try growing pineapple from seeds, but that will take much longer to arrive at a mature plant. (Still worth the fun of the experience, though, if you ask me!)

Learn how to propagate pineapple from tops using this comprehensive guide.

How do pineapples reproduce?

Pineapples reproduce asexually, which means the offspring of the parent plant are identical copies. Planted pineapples may produce their own pups or “slips,” which can be replanted to grow more pineapple plants.

A home propagation method involves growing pineapple from tops in water and later replanting in soil.

It’s also possible to grow baby pineapple plants from seeds, although your results may vary and not all seeds will produce viable pineapple plants.

Beautiful, fresh pineapple on the deck
Beautiful, fresh pineapple on the deck

When does a pineapple plant produce fruit?

A pineapple plant produces fruit in 2 to 3 years, regardless of propagation method. In many grow zone regions, you will need to keep pineapple plants indoors over the winter to ensure the plants live long enough to reach this milestone.

Can you force a pineapple plant to produce fruit sooner?

Sometimes it is possible to force a pineapple plant to bear fruit sooner using the apple ethylene ripening method.

Some gardeners have successfully forced early pineapple fruit production using this technique. It involves putting a ripe apple with the pineapple plant, where the apple releases ethylene gas that triggers fruiting.

Pineapple plant in a ceramic flower pot outside in the sun
It doesn’t look much different than the top of a store-bought pineapple! Maybe time to pot it up in a bigger container!

Pineapple Propagation at Home

If you would like to try propagating pineapple at home, now is the perfect time to start!

Choosing a Pineapple for Propagation

The first step when you want to try propagating pineapple is to choose a fruit with a healthy top.

When shopping for pineapple that you want to regrow, look for these characteristics:

  • Healthy, dark green leaves / fronds
  • Fresh, new growth coming from the center of the pineapple top
  • Overall healthy look to the pineapple’s exterior

By the way, you might also enjoy these tips on how to tell if a pineapple is ripe when you’re craving that juicy, delicious fruit!

How to Propagate Pineapple

Learning how to grow pineapples from tops is a truly empowering gardening experiment that allows you to make more plants from store-bought fruit. Try growing pineapple from top of the fruit to produce a brand-new plant!

Planting a pineapple top doesn’t take a lot of time to get started. You can try this propagation at home in a matter of minutes.

Consider two methods of pineapple propagation – planting a pineapple top in soil or rooting pineapple tops in water.

Preparing Pineapple Tops for Planting - Knife and Pineapple on a Cutting Board
Preparing Pineapple Tops for Planting – Knife and Pineapple on a Cutting Board

Cutting Pineapple Tops for Propagation

Follow these steps to cut pineapple tops away from the fruit and begin the pineapple propagating process.

  1. Place the pineapple on its side on a cutting board.
  2. Use a strong knife to cut the top off the pineapple. Cut pineapple tops about ½ inch from where the fronds start.
  3. Use the knife or culinary shears to trim the bottom to reveal the brown root buds.
  4. Set the pineapple top aside to dry for a few days or up to one week.
Brown Root Buds on Pineapple Top to Propagate
Brown Root Buds on Pineapple Top to Propagate

Propagating Pineapple Tops in Water

After preparing the pineapple top for propagation, continue to these steps for growing pineapple from top in water.

  1. After drying for a few days, place the pineapple top in a dish of water in a sunny window.
  2. Replace the water daily and check regularly for signs of root growth.
  3. Once roots emerge, continue caring for the pineapple top until they become longer.
  4. Transfer the pineapple top from water to a loose, sandy soil mix or special potting mix for succulents and tropicals.

Planting a Pineapple Top in Soil

Some gardeners find it easier to plant pineapple tops in soil directly, skipping the water propagation steps.

Try planting pineapple tops in soil for another way to propagate new plants.

  1. After drying for a few days, prepare a planter with loose soil mix containing sand and perlite.
  2. Plant pineapple tops in soil up to the point where the leaves begin.
  3. Water the pineapple top adequately at the soil level.
  4. Place the planted pineapple top in a location with bright, indirect sunlight.
  5. Water regularly to keep the soil moist for best chances of successful pineapple propagation.
  6. Continue caring for the pineapple top and check for roots around 6 to 8 weeks after planting. (Gently pull up on the plant to see if rooting is taking place.)
  7. After roots emerge, you can gradually acclimate the rooted pineapple plant to more direct sunlight, eventually moving it outdoors for the summer months.

Now that you know how to grow a pineapple top, I hope you’ll have lots of success and your very own pineapple harvest on the horizon.

Healthy Pineapple Top for Planting
Healthy Pineapple Top for Planting

Learning How to Plant a Pineapple Top

The experience of growing pineapple plants from tops is pretty empowering as a gardener. I truly enjoy plant propagation as much if not more than seed starting – two of my favorite gardening activities.

When growing pineapple from tops, you just need to have a little patience and a tiny bit of luck.

In my experience, it’s pretty easy to propagate pineapples from tops, but every attempt may not be successful.

Also keep in mind that propagated pineapples won’t necessarily fruit right away. Sometimes it can take years!

A planted pineapple top growing in a white ceramic pot outside on the deck
A planted pineapple top growing in a white ceramic pot outside on the deck (Picture snapped May 11, 2023)

If it doesn’t work out, don’t worry! Pineapple is so delicious, so go buy yourself another one and try again!

You might also enjoy trying to grow pineapple plants from seeds!

Right now, I have two pineapple tops growing as new plants. One pineapple top growing in water had been in the vase for over a year. I finally planted it in soil and it’s doing quite well in a white ceramic planter.

Top view of propagated and planted pineapple top
Top view of propagated and planted pineapple top

The other pineapple top plant is growing in soil in a medium sized flower pot.

I love setting the propagated pineapple plant outside to soak up the summer sun! It’s all good as long as I remember to bring it back indoors before the cold temps return.


The most common method of pineapple propagation among home gardeners tends to be rooting and planting the tops. Growing pineapples from seed is also possible.

Commercially, farmers propagate pineapple plants from suckers or slips that grow from the mother plant.

It usually takes around 6 to 8 weeks for a pineapple top to form roots, according to the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

Growing Pineapple at Home!

Have you tried planting a pineapple top to grow a new plant? Do you have any questions about pineapple propagation or success stories to share?

Hit us up in the comments – we love hearing from you and enjoy sharing this fun journey!

Happy Gardening!

05.12.23 – Updated to add new photos and update alt tags, updated headings a bit. Added FAQ with questions and new content and added link to Extension. Updated the date from 06.22.22.

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