The Variegated Pineapple or Ivory Pineapple, scientific name Ananas comosus var. variegatus, is a tropical plant that belongs to the Bromeliaceae family. It is an evergreen perennial native to tropical regions of South America.
It is a type of pineapple that has been selectively bred for its unique coloration. This variety is characterized by yellow and white leaves bordered by red. The fruit is also smaller than most other types of pineapples and is typically tasteless. The plant is grown more for the novelty of the leaves rather than the edibility of the fruit as a houseplant. It mainly serves ornamental purposes and is not widely available in stores.
- Variegated Pineapple Main Characteristics
- Variegated Pineapple Care
- Propagating Variegated Pineapple by Offsets
- Propagating by Planting Pineapples’ Crowns
- Potting and Repotting Variegated Pineapple
- Common Pests
- Care guide for Variegated Pineapple (Ananas Comosus var. Variegatus) (Video)
Variegated Pineapple Main Characteristics
|Common Name||Ivory Pineapple, Variegated Pineapple|
|Botanical Name||Ananas comosus var. variegatus|
|Native Range||Tropical Americas|
|USDA Hardiness Zones||10 to 12|
|Mature Size||Height: 2-3 feet; Spread: 2-4 feet|
|Propagation methods||by offsets|
Variegated Pineapple Care
The variegated pineapple is a beautiful plant with striking foliage and attention-grabbing fruit. It can be grown both indoors and outdoors. And in many different climates to boot. Just don’t expect its fruit (which is edible) to be anything other than decorations as they lack the sweet taste of their more commonly cultivated brethren.
Light and Location
Ananas comosus var. variegatus is a tropical plant that needs bright light to grow properly. Variegated pineapples want a little more light than common pineapples, but not too much. They thrive in morning sun and afternoon shade or filtered light, or in very bright windows indoors. Too much direct sunlight will damage the leaves. They are tolerant of understory shade, where they have some filtered light and some protection from full sun. It can also be grown outside, provided the temperature remains within acceptable ranges.
Moderate water needs; do not over-water. Watering frequency varies depending on pot size, location, and time of year. Allow it to dry thoroughly between watering. This plant needs more water when it is in the growth phase. And less frequently when not actively growing.
These plants like warmth. Around 70-86 degrees Fahrenheit (21-30 C) is an ideal temperature for them indoors. They can be placed outside during the summer if you bring them inside before night temperatures drop below 50℉ (10℃). They cannot tolerate frost or cold drafts.
Variegated pineapples are less tolerant of dry air than other pineapple varieties. It’s important to ensure they have a humid environment in which to live. In the absence of a greenhouse or humidity tent, simply place a tray of water beneath your plant, and check it daily. If you have central heat or air conditioning taking out the moisture from the room, you may want to invest in a small humidifier for your plant. Misting your plant morning and evening will also help.
Though these plants usually don’t need fertilizer, it helps to feed them come growing season (spring and summer). A balanced liquid fertilizer (10-10-10) diluted to half strength is more than enough if you feed the plant every two weeks. You can stop fertilizing during the dormancy period (fall and winter)
Propagating Variegated Pineapple by Offsets
Ananas comosus var. variegatus is usually propagated by planting the offsets or cuttings. The offsets from the basal base of the plant serve as the ideal candidates for planting. Use well-drained soil (peat and sand mixture has had good results) and water regularly. You should also apply fertilizer to the soil around the offsets to ensure proper growth. Keep it in a bright spot without direct light, and don’t let the temperature fall below 20°C.
Propagating by Planting Pineapples’ Crowns
Here’s a guide to how you can propagate pineapple by planting the crown:
- Prepare a pot – Using good quality, rich potting mix.
- Remove the crown by carefully cutting and twisting from a fresh pineapple.
- Allow the crown to dry for one or two days. This helps to seal the base of the plant, preventing rot.
- Plant the crown into the potting mix and water it well until water runs freely from the drainage holes in your pot. Keep it moist but not soggy.
- Place your plant in a warm, sunny location (but not in direct sunlight). If you want to keep it inside during winter, aim for a bright position such as near a window.
- Feed with an all-purpose fertiliser every fortnight while the pineapple is growing.
Potting and Repotting Variegated Pineapple
Use a standard bromeliad mix when potting this plant for the first time. Avoid soil if you can, and don’t pack it in tightly; these plants like a bit of breathing room to grow. Choose a porous clay pot for the best results and drill holes in the sides of the pot to allow for water drainage. These plants hate to be waterlogged.
Variegated pineapple should be repotted every two years. After flowering, it should be repotted into a slightly larger pot using standard potting soil with added bark or organic material. Take the root ball out and gently dust off the soil remnants before repotting. Take care not to damage the roots as they take time to recover. Afterward, place the plant in the new pot and water thoroughly.
Variegated pineapples are mildly toxic; the toxicity results from the presence of Bromelin in the leaves, stalk, and fruit of the plant. It can cause mild skin irritation. And the fruits are spiky enough to cause damage to those not careful.
The common pests of the variegated pineapple are the scales, mealybugs, and mites. The pests feed on the sap of the plant and can cause damage to the leaves, fruit, and stem. If infected, clean the leaves with rubbing alcohol or mild-strength pesticide.
Care guide for Variegated Pineapple (Ananas Comosus var. Variegatus) (Video)
What is a Variegated Pineapple?
Variegated pineapple is an evergreen perennial. While similar to the more famous “Pineapple,” it is different. Although edible, it does not taste the same as a regular pineapple. Instead, it is grown as an indoor houseplant for its unique coloration and striking features.
Can you eat Variegated Pineapple?
You can eat a Variegated Pineapple. But it does not taste the same as a regular one as it is typically tasteless.
How do you care for a bromeliad Pineapple?
It needs to be kept in a warm room with high to moderate humidity. Give it bright, indirect light. Try to give it moderate water but don’t let the soil get waterlogged. Don’t feed it when it isn’t actively growing.
“BROMELIACEAE 鳳梨科 – Variegated Pineapple (Ananas comosus cv. ‘Variegata’ 斑葉鳳梨” by kaiyanwong223 is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
“Variegated pineapple (Ananas comosus)” by Dave Hitchborne is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0
“2011-02-06_077longwood” by lblanchard is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0