Pineapple Problem

Hi all, first post here! I am struggling with my white pineapple, and desperately need help. I attached a picture. I planted the top last August and it survived the cold “winter” in my garage (9B). I’ve tried different fertilizers (fish, sea grow 16-16-16, leaves and soil), more water, less water, but the leaves are really red, and it is getting worse.

I’m not a stranger to tropicals. I’m trying to grow a bunch of stuff including achacha, jaboticaba, pitangatuba, guavas, and others, all in containers. My passionfruits have gone crazy he

re and I also have my normal garden of 30 tomatoes, eggplants, peppers, etc. I mention this to give an idea of my climate.

Any ideas what to try? Soil pH is around neutral, which I will try to lower. I was planning to use citric acid. I was thinking perhaps to much sun, but I thought they love sun. I really want to get this thing to grow. I appreciate any advice!


No advise as I live in zone 6 and don’t grow tropicals, but WELCOME to the forum! :slightly_smiling_face:


Looks kinda like Phosphate deficiency, but is not.
I believe that this is too much Zinc & Sodium,
in combination with the cold.
Zinc finger protein enzymes stimulate red & purple pigments & are used by a plant to detect temperature.
Give Iron-EDDHA & Citric Acid.
Keep in a hot, humid, dark location for 1 week after giving Iron & Citric Acid.
Then move into the sun & water from the bottom.

Hi @ZinHead , thank you so much for the advice! The Fe-EDDTA arrived today. I treated with 1/2tsp Fe and 1/4tsp citric acid in 1 gal of my filtered tap water. I also confirmed my tap is pH 7, and the soil is slightly acidic (around 6). I moved the pot into our little doorway which will be shade all day. Temps will be near 100F the next couple days. I can’t do much about humidity… :frowning: I’ll keep you updated with my progress!

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Oh, I forgot to mention, the 1/4tsp citric acid should lower the pH around 1 point based on a reference I found.

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Just guessing cold damage with too much sun. Go easy on additives

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My apologies should have given better, more detailed information.
Citric acid 3.2pH, is non toxic, pineapple can tolerate very high levels of it.
Less Iron & more acid would have been slightly better.
But what you did is OK.
A darker environment than that is best.
Like can put a large cardboard box over that plant to exclude even more light.
Being in the dark will trigger root growth & new root tips will produce Cytokinins sparking new growth.

@ZinHead Thanks again! I did a bit of reading on cytokinins including a few papers. Interesting stuff. I have degrees in Chemistry and Physics but my Bio is lacking. I find this stuff very interesting but it gets very technical very fast. I will continue to explore it. If you have recommendations for “Plants for Dummies” or something I would appreciate it.

Oh yeah, and I added a box. Lol

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Never read plants for dummies.
Find articles & use websearch for HTML & PDF search for PDF files & image to text software for other things then HTML search, to find relevant information.
And read only what is essential.
Usually have 3 dozen to 7 dozen different windows open researching topics this way.
Then I do experiments based on what I learned.
Hope it works report back results please.

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Just a quick update, guys. It has been a little over a week. I attached pics from this morning. Time to move back into sun? More citric acid?


Another pic. I can only post one at a time.


Also forgot to mention I trimmed the brown bits off.

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Yes, more Citric acid, every time you water for 6 months.

Post pics once a month of progress & I will help you keep all the nutrients balanced.

Send me another straight down pic into the crown in 1 week.
There may be additional nutrient imbalances.
I’m very good at detecting even minor nutrient imbalances in many species.
Gladly it is recovering.

Another updated pic. It definitely looks better!

Just to clarify, should I continue to leave it in the dark?

Also, it still looks pretty wet. Should I give it more citric acid anyway?

Thank you so much for your help!

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Looks like the growing point in the crown has started to grow & is dark green.
Take out of the box, yet keep it is the shade.
Slowly transition back to the sun.
Continue to use Citric Acid.
Post progress weekly please.

Hi! Another update! My pineapple looks much better and is definitely growing. I still have it in mostly shade but I’ve been giving citric acid solution every few days. Still alive! Haha


Yet developing Boron deficiency!
It is recovering, but your (soil & water) are slightly too boron deficient for pineapple.
Mix a very small pinch of Borax approximately (1/100) teaspoon into 1 quart of 110°F water.
Add (1/8) to (1/4) teaspoon Citric Acid to the same water to make acidic as borax about 9.6pH.
Mix very well.
Spray straight down into the crown where the apical meristem stem cells are located.
Don’t spray adult leaves, only the tissues in the crown where leaves join the core.
Keep posting.
Next time tag me @ZinHead

Shine a exotic hyper-violet led flashlight or ultraviolet or blacklight into the crown with lights off.
Hyperviolet 430nm or (410nm to 475nm) closest to absorption frequency that causes Chlorophyll-A to glow yellow green.
Since you gave it Iron, if it doesn’t glow bright, then there is a need for (Magnesium & Sulfur) for Chlorophyll-A production.
If it doesn’t glow bright, then modified formula:
(1/8) teaspoon Citric acid
(1/16) teaspoon Epsom salt.
(1/100) teaspoon Borax
In 1 quart of 110°F water sprayed into the crown.