Saucer fruit

Activity

Grow this exciting exotic fruit from it's green, spikey top!

  • Estimated time: 15 minutes
  • Location: Indoors
  • School term: All year round
  • Level of experience: No experience needed
  • Subject(s): Science, Geography

Learning objectives

  • Learn to recognise the adaptations shown by the pineapple for growing in a tropical place
  • Requirements for life and growth
  • Grow new plants from different parts of the parent plant
  • Describe the weather in a tropical climate zone and locate on a world map

Preparation

Look at a world map to see where the tropical regions are located.

Get a pineapple, with spikey green leaves still attached.

Feel the spikey leaves and notice that they are thick and leathery.

Look at a photo of a pineapple to see where the fruit grows on the plant.

 

Equipment

  • Pineapple
  • Sharp knife for adult use
  • Photo of a growing pineapple

Did you know?

The pineapple is in the same 'plant family' as the bromiliad - you can see similarities in the style of leaves.
The leaves are leathery to help prevent water loss and have a greyish powder on them that acts like suncream to protect against damage from the sun.

Step by step

  1. Buy a pineapple from any supermarket or green grocers.
  2. Cut off the spiky green top (and eat the fruit!)
  3. Peal off four to five layers of leaves.
  4. You can sometimes see the roots already growing.
  5. Stand the pineapple top in water( this may be easier to do in a jam jar of water).
  6. When roots begin to appear carefully twist the pineapple top into a pot of moistened compost.
  7. Although the pineapple plant grows in tropical conditions it does not like too much water - a small amount given often will be enough!

 

Further growing ideas

Why not grow a piece of root ginger into a ginger plant! You only need to use a small amount of root to grow a whole new plant. Sit the root over water (you could poke cocktail sticks into the sides to prevent the root being fully submerged) and you will soon see roots and shoots developing.

Hints & tips

  • Water the pineapple from the top, into the crown of leaves.
  • Pineapples grow in tropical places - Find out where the pineapple you have was grown and look on a map to locate the country.
  • Find out about the temperature and rainfall in the country of origin and this will tell you the ideal conditions your plant will need to grow!

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