Do Pineapples Have Seeds? (Some Species Do)

There are actually over 200 different varieties of Pineapples, and they can range from having lots of big seeds to being seedless.

pineapple seeds | Plant Gardener

Generally, Pineapples have seeds, which can be found buried underneath the skin of the fruit. It has a dark brown or dark color.

Pineapples that grow from high elevations will often be seedless because there is less humidity at those levels for the fruit to develop properly. 

Lowland pineapple plants tend to have a higher rate of producing edible fruit with a higher number of small seeds. 

Oftentimes, people eat the soft inner flesh on the rind along with the rest of the fruit – so if the pineapple has a lot of large or noticeable seeds on its interior it would not be as desirable as one without. 

In order to maximize their pineapple yields, farmers handpick all their fruits to ensure they have a high percentage of pineapple with a perfect shape and minimal seeds. 

Which Family Do Pineapples Belong?

Pineapple plants all belong to the bromeliad family, and there are about 500 different species of bromeliads. They grow from a combination of spores and seeds, but the majority of reproduction comes from spore propagation. 

In fact, it’s estimated that only 2% to 20% of bromeliad species reproduce via seeds. However, since there are so many different types of bromeliad plants, some produce a lot more seeds than others do.

Seeds have been found in pineapples, but they’re not considered viable because pineapple plants produce a lot more spores than they do actual functional seeds. 

This is believed to be due to cross-pollination between different varieties during ancient times when early humans would carry fruits from one place to another. While these old seeds aren’t viable, they’re still very much a part of the pineapple fruit and shouldn’t be eaten or swallowed.

 The bromeliad family has over 3,000 species that grow in every continent except Antarctica. The majority of them are epiphytes, which means they grow on other plants but don’t actually consume nutrients from the plant itself.

Every year, about 20 million pineapples are produced across the world to meet the high demand for this delicious fruit. Pineapple plants take about 18 months to two years (depending on variety) before they can flower and produce fruit.

FamilyBromeliaceae
SpeciesA. comosus
GenusAnanas
KingdomPlantae

Is Pineapple A Seedless Fruit?

The complex answer to this question is that pineapples don’t grow on trees and aren’t true fruit. They may seem like a tasty, exotic addition to summer salads and desserts, but actually, they are enlarged stems of the plant. 

If you’ve ever seen a pineapple flower when it’s in bloom, you’ll understand why we say their origins can be somewhat confusing.

Not only do pineapple plants not produce any seeds of their own (because they’re sterile), but the ‘fruit’ part isn’t considered by botanists to be fruit at all because it develops from the plant stem rather than from ovaries. 

Pineapple fruits contain many small undeveloped seeds which never mature due to lack of pollination.

The pineapple plants (Ananas comosus) that we know and love are not trees, but herbaceous perennials, which means they are stem plants with persistent leaf bases on top. The leaves of the plant grow directly from the underground root system called a ‘corm’. This corm can weigh up to twelve pounds at maturity.

A new plant will only come from the base of this corm, not from seeds or shoots as with other fruit crops. In fact, commercial pineapple production usually doesn’t involve seeds at all since propagated varieties have been selected for their sterile nature. 

Seeds would be extremely challenging to remove from pineapples anyway because the core is made up of many small compartments, some containing seeds and others with very small ‘seed leaves of their own.

Part of the reason pineapples can’t produce seeds may be that they are hybrids. Some of the most common pineapple varieties belong to complex species groups known as ‘pineapple x’. These plant types are not always easily distinguished from one another in spite of their different characteristics due to crossing between different wild species over time. 

For example, the smooth-skinned ‘Hawaiian Gold’ is a golden yellow pineapple with low acidity while the prickly Jamaican Red is bright red, highly acidic, and has cone-shaped fruits. Both are considered “A” Pineapple X Groups which means they were derived by crossing AABB and AACD parent plants.

Pineapples can be cultivated from the tops of their fruit as well as their suckers and slips, although only the latter two methods will produce new plants with an identical genetic makeup to the parent. 

Slips are just shoots that grow off of existing pineapples or suckers that come up around the base after a flower stalk falls over. 

Each slip represents tissue from a different node on the underground stem and has its own unique characteristics such as color and flavor so they’re often grown separately and selected for their desirable traits before being cloned by rooting them in water or soil. That’s why most canned pineapple products derive from so many different cultivars.

One of the most common types of pineapples is the Smooth Cayenne introduced in 1874. It’s well known for having red or maroon spines on its leaves and stems, but it also produces large fruits with yellow-gold flesh and very low acidity. 

The Brazilian variety ‘Queen’ was developed in 1965 by crossing a Smooth Cayenne with a Red Spanish pineapple and then backcrossing to create a plant that has all the best traits from each parent including improved color, shape, and firmness. These two cultivars account for about 80% of all pineapples grown in Hawaii.

How Many Seeds Are In A Pineapple?

It is difficult to give an exact number of pineapples’ seeds per fruit because pineapples themselves come in different sizes. Some can have up to 200 or so while others may only have two inside. Generally, there are around 20-30 seeds in most medium-sized fruits.

So…can you eat pineapple seeds? Can you eat the same fruit that cows eat? 

Yes, you can! The tiny black flecks that resemble sesame or poppy seeds on top of your slice of pineapple are actually its seeds. Although it tastes much better already juiced and ready to drink (and without any weird crunchy bits), doesn’t make for bad snacks either.

What is the nutritional value of pineapple seeds? Are they worth eating?

Pineapple seeds are not entirely composed of carbohydrates. They also contain small traces of phosphorus, sodium, magnesium, sulfur, and potassium. Each seed may not have many calories but you’ll get more than enough vitamins to get your daily allowance with just one fruit!

So go ahead and take a big bite out of that slice of pineapple instead of spitting them out like how you usually do when you eat watermelon seeds.

But make sure to chew it well because, unlike watermelon’s seeds which aren’t actually hard to chew on, pineapple’s seeds can still leave your jaw sore after hours spent chomping on them. After all, each seed does consist of around 20% of the fruit’s weight.

Oh, and don’t forget to keep the lid on your trash bin because pineapple seeds can still grow into new pineapples (if only they’ll take root in soil)! Now you know why these fruits are so expensive – not just for their taste, but also for their capability to reproduce.

How Pineapples Spread Their Seed

A pineapple plant is actually a collection of small individuals that work together called a colony. Not every pineapple within a group will be identical to one another, but they will all share similar characteristics with siblings including similarities in flower color.

Pineapples are made up of multiple buds growing from an underground stem called a “corm”. The corm forms from the base of the fruit after it has been picked or fallen off of the main plant. It is what produces new pineapples on the plant.

At the top of the pineapple, you will notice small flowers growing in clusters on a stem made up of modified leaves called petioles. These are where pineapple reproduction occurs. Each flower contains both female, male, and hermaphrodite organs. 

They have all three sexes combined into one flower, quite literally. A portion of each sex is contained within the other two so that they can fertilize themselves without outside interference. This results in very complex genetics where siblings may be more different from their fellow plants than fraternal twins are from each other.

On average, fruit stems with multiple flowers will produce about 6 to 10 fruits between 4 to 6 months. Since pineapples are grown for their sweet fruit, the rest of the plant is discarded after it has fulfilled its reproductive purpose. The flowers rapidly mature from pollination to fruit in about a month’s time.

In order for pineapples to spread their seeds, they have highly-specialized structures called an “involucre” which forms around each individual flower. This structure develops from modified leaves surrounding the female organs and protects the pineapple seeds as they develop into tiny black fruits that we commonly call “pineapple seeds”. 

These round beads vary in size between species but can be up to 1/4 inch in diameter if left on the corm. When these tiny fruits mature and become ready for dispersal (which changes color depending on ripeness), they detach and may be dispersed by water, wind, and other animals.

Once the fruit or seeds have been dispersed away from the corm, they each contain two to six pineapple seeds. Since these are examples of what we call “accessory fruits” which provide service beyond just reproduction, only one pineapple plant will actually grow from each seed. 

Since these plants produce so many fruits at once and there is no need for the parent plant to use energy and resources to support more than one offspring (since they can fertilize themselves), it does not send out runners as runner beans do. For this reason, you cannot easily propagate additional plants through this method.

How long do pineapples take to grow? It takes freshly planted pineapple seeds between 6 months and a year before they become mature, fruiting plants.

Conclusion

Pineapples contain seeds both in wild and cultivated types of pineapples.

However, these are not meant for planting as most people might be tempted to do so. The seeds will not germinate or produce new pineapples. 

image

To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow!

Sign up for our newsletter and turn your thumb greener with each season. No spam, just blooms. Subscribe now and start nurturing nature's beauty with us!

You have Successfully Subscribed!