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Tales of pineapples and pecans

Email your gardening questions to Keith at

Q:  How do I start a pineapple plant?

A:   Get a cut off pineapple top from one you purchased or from the produce department at your grocer. Let the base of the pineapple top dry out for a few days; set it in a pot of soil. Place the pot in a shady place. The pineapple top will form roots and the plant will begin to grow. It will take at least a year and a half before the pineapple will be produced.

Q:   I have a bearing pineapple plant. How can I tell when the pineapple is ripe?

A: As the pineapple ripens you will notice a subtle color change. The outer surface will turn from green to a light shade of brown. Once the green starts to fade, the pineapple can be harvested at any time.

Q:   What are some types of pecans that would be good for our area?

A:    Some tested varieties for North Florida are Elliot, Curtis and Morehead. Stuart is also good but reportedly fruits better when a pollinator like Desirable is planted near it.

Q:   My pecan tree is now several years old. I notice the bark is starting to peel on areas of the trunk. Is this due to a disease?

A:   Pecans have exfoliating bark. When it matures, the bark will naturally slough off through time.

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