May 20, 2012

Hala kahiki - Pineapple

Quick! Name a fruit people eat in Hawaii!

Maybe you picked one of these: mango, lilikoi (passionfruit), guava, papaya or lychee; but I'm sure most people would put pineapple at the top of the list. However, none of the fruits listed, including pineapple, are native to Hawaii!

Before we moved here, I imagined myself wandering outside and picking a fresh pineapple everyday. Then I read that one plant takes 2-3 YEARS to grow a fruit. Then you get one fruit a season. Sounded like too much work, so I abandoned my hala kahiki garden idea and bought them at the store.

Until a month ago, I noticed this growing on my neighbor's lanai:
Are you allowed to covet your neighbor's pineapple?
A friend told me how easy they were to grow, and after some confirmation on the internet, I set out to grow my own. Here are the 3 easy steps:

1. Buy a pineapple.

2. Cut the top off of the pineapple. Eat the rest :)

 3. Plant top in soil.

Voila! In 2-3 years come and visit and we might have one super fresh pineapple to try. If not, we'll drive you to the Dole Plantation and you can buy one there.

The best part about this whole thing is you can do it too! If you live where it gets frosty, bring your baby pineapple inside until the danger of frost is clear. For example, in Michigan that would be from Sept-May :) Just make sure you get a big enough pot, since it will get 5 feet across and is pretty pokey.

The hala kahiki hairstyle is popular with toddlers
Let me know if you plant one too!


  1. Anonymous6/01/2012

    When Terry & I went to the plantation 20 yrs ago(I was only 4) we were very surprised to see the pineapple heads neatly planted in rows like corn waiting to get big, chopped, and replanted. We forgot Hawaii was a tropical chain of hard lava, only suitable for growing produce w/ much adaptation. California keeps busy shipping tropical fruits to the tropics. Those baby hala kahiki sure are cute. Thanks for the snow bunny pics to add to my wall.

    1. Yeah, sorry I doubted you when you said they plant the tops. I couldn't believe it was that easy! Thankfully, most of our pineapples are local, but most other stuff is shipped here. Funny to be getting apples from New Zealand!