It’s Cold Outside! Now it’s the middle of October and the pineapple (along with my orchids) are inside and under a 400W HID (high intensity discharge) light. Because the light dramatically changes the color of the photo making plants an ugly shade of yellow-orange, I had to take this picture in the dark with a flash, which is why it looks a bit odd. But it’s clear the pineapple is developing. It now has a nice crown of leaves on top. It’s definitely smaller than the pineapple it came from—perhaps 3" tall. Clearly, the growing conditions are not ideal.
Pineapples are usually pollinated by hummingbirds or bats. Hawaii has no native hummingbirds and bans their importation. The reason for this ban is to keep the Hawaiian pineapples from being pollinated. This does not prevent the growth of the fruit, but it does mean there will be will be none of the tiny black seeds. Pineapples that are seedless are produced though parthenocarpy, which means virgin fruit. Most plants do not do this in the wild and it seems that it would not contribute to their survival as a species.
However, being able to produce seedless fruit when pollination is unsuccessful provides food for the animals that distribute the plant’s seeds. Without a fruit crop, the seed-dispersing animals might starve or move somewhere else. I have no idea whether or not my pineapple was pollinated. I’ll have to wait until it looks like it’s ripe and cut it open to see.