Today the tropical crop propagation continued. Rotem bought five Ananas comosus fruits, known commonly as pineapple. The fruits still have the top shoots attached, this is essential for propagation. Pineapples imported to Israel have the top shoots removed, this is to prevent propagation of foreign fruits, reducing chances of disease introduction.
The best thing about A. comosus propagation is that only the stem, not the fruit can be propagated. Fruit disposal is something we elected to use our stomachs for, which quickly promoted this to my favourite propagation task!
The interesting thing about the fruits we got is the shoot number. I have only ever seen pineapples with a single shoot on top, some of ours have up to seven. This is great for us as it means our five fruits have enough stems to produce 20 plants.
To propagate A. comosus a thin slice is removed from the top of the fruit which includes the stem. The fruit pulp is then pulled away and lower stem leaves are removed. We elected to try two different rooting mediums. Some crowns were split to single which where partially submerged in water, other crowns were left intact and potted in 2:1 perlite:vermiculite. It will be interesting to see if one method is superior.