|See the individual purple flowers above each scale? Notice the sharp spines on the leaves, too.|
|Planting pineapple crowns at Campbell Park Elementary schoolyard garden.|
|Hank adding to the Sanderlin Pineapple Patch!|
- Fresh pineapple is low in calories.
- Its flesh contains no saturated fats or cholesterol
- It is rich source of soluble and insoluble dietary fiber like pectin.
- Pineapple fruit contains a proteolytic enzyme bromelain that digests food by breaking down protein. Bromelain also has anti-inflammatory, anti-clotting and anti-cancer properties. Studies have shown that consumption of pineapple regularly helps fight against arthritis, indigestion and worm infestation.
- Fresh pineapple is an excellent source of antioxidant vitamins, such as vitamin C. Vitamin C is required for the collagen synthesis in the body. Collagen is the main structural protein in the body required for maintaining the integrity of blood vessels, skin, organs, and bones. Regular consumption of foods rich in vitamin C helps the body fend off infectious diseases, scurvy and pro-inflammatory free radicals.
- It also contains small amount the antioxidants Vitamin A and beta-carotene. These compounds are known to have antioxidant properties. Vitamin A is also required maintaining healthy mucus membranes, skin and vision. Studies have suggested that consumption of natural fruits rich in flavonoids helps the human body to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.
- It is rich in B-complex vitamins like folates, thiamin, pyridoxine, riboflavin, and minerals like copper, manganese, and potassium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids and helps control heart rate and blog pressure. Copper is a cofactor for red blood synthesis. Manganese is a cofactor for the enzyme superoxide dismutase, a very powerful free-radical scavenger (http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/pineapple.html).
It takes a patient person to grow a pineapple. In the gardens I've worked, it's taken an average of 2 years after planting for pineapples to start to flower, and then it can be another 6 months before the fruit matures and ripens. Get suckers and slips from friends whenever possible, because these tend to grow faster than crowns.