Edited by Ho Dinh Hai Long An - Vietnam Updated: 29/4/2015
1- Introduction to the Genus Ananas
1.1- Overview Ananasis a plant genus of the Bromeliad family (Bromeliaceae), native toSouth Americaand Central Americawhich includes the species Ananas comosus, thepineapple. This genus originated inMesoamericaand was brought to theCaribbeanIslands by theCarib natives. The oldest register with the representation of the fruit seems to be included in theCascajal Block, attributed to theOlmec civilization. In 1493,Christopher Columbusfirst saw plants of this genus inGuadeloupe. It was brought from Brazil to Europe by thePortuguese, and from there was distributed to the Pacific Islands by the Spanish and the English. Commercial pineapple plantations were established inHawaii, the Philippines,Southeast Asia,FloridaandCuba. The pineapple has become one of the world's most popular fruits. The wordAnanasis derived from theGuaraniname for the pineapple, viaPortuguese. In most languages, pineapple is called "ananas". Synonyms AnanassaLindl. PseudananasHassl. ex Harms in H.G.A.Engler 1.2- Description The tough leaves grow in large rosettes, arising basally from a crown. These leaves are long and lanceolate with a serrate or thorny margin. The flowers, arising from the heart of the rosette, each have their own sepals. They grow into a compact head on a short, robust stalk. The sepals become fleshy and juicy and develop into the well-known complex form of the pseudocarp fruit, crowned by a rosette of leaves.
2- Species of the Genus Ananas
The Genus Ananas has 7 species: 1- Ananas ananassoides(Baker)L.B. Smith- from Costa Rica to Paraguay 2- Ananas bracteatus(Lindley) Schultes & Schultes f.- Red Pineapple - Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay, Ecuador 3- Ananas comosus(Linnaeus) Merrill- Pineapple- Brazil and Paraguay; naturalized in parts of Asia, Africa, Australia, Mexico, Central America, the West Indies, northern South America, and various islands in the Pacific 4- Ananas erectifoliusL.B.Sm.- Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, northern Brazil, French Guiana. 5- Ananas lucidus(Aiton) Schult. & Schult.f- Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, northern Brazil, French Guiana. 6- Ananas macrodontesE.Morren- Brazil, Bolivia, Ecuador, Paraguay, northern Argentina. 7- Ananas parguazensisCamargo &L.B. Smith- Colombia, Venezuela, northern Brazil, Guyana, French Guiana.
2.2- Species Ananas bracteatus + Overview Ananas bracteatus(Lindley) Schultes & Schultes f.- Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina, Paraguay, Ecuador. Ananas bracteatus(common names:Red pineapple,Wild Pineapple) is a species of thepineapple. It is native toSouth America(Brazil,Bolivia,Argentina, Paraguay,Ecuador). Ananas bracteatusis grown as anornamental plantsfor its decorative red fruit. The leaves are long with sharp spines, so it can be used as a protective hedge for home security. In colder places they can be grown indoors as a houseplant. It grows throughoutBrazilat elevations of 140 to 320 metres (450-1,050 ft). Synonyms of the Species Ananas bracteatus Ananas bracteatus(Lindl.) Schult. & Schult.f. = Ananas bracteatus var. typicusL.B.Sm. = Ananas comosus var. bracteatus(Lindl.) Coppens & F.Leal = Ananassa bracteataLindl. = Ananas sativus var. bracteatus(Lindl.) Mez + Description Ananas bracteatusis a short lived perennial terrestrial plant related to the pineapple that grows up to about 90 cm tall (up to 1,2 m when flowering) and 90-120 cm wide. It is grown as an ornamental plant for its conspicuous red inflorescences and fruit. The similar False Pineapple (Pseudananas sagenarius) has spines at the base of the leaves that curve downward toward the base of the plant. Pineapple (Ananas comosus) has much less colourful inflorescences and larger fruit. Some taxonomists classify this as simply a variety of pineapple (Ananas comosus), not as a separate species. All the species in Ananas were recently transferred as varieties or cultivars ofAnanas comosus. This plant is nowAnanas comosusvar. bracteatus. - Stem: Almost acaulescent or with a very short, trunk-like stem a the base of the rosette. - Leaves: Many, evergreen, arching, arranged in a spiral in a spreading rosette, simple, ribbon-like, long-attenuate, acuminate, pungent, up to 1,5 (or more) cm long and not over 40 mm wide above the dilated base, coriaceous, fibrous, solid dark green with a red hue with subdensely serrate margins with sharp spines that curve up toward the leaf tips. - Flowers: Inflorescence:The floral scape is up to about 50 cm long, robust and straight, develops at the centre of the rosette and ends with an inflorescence formed by showy, spiny, imbricate bracts, with serrate, pink or bright red margins, which surround the small violet-purple or reddish pink flowers and with, on the top, a thick coma (tuft of leaves). This plant is monocarpic (it bears flowers only one time in its life). Usually the plant will bear one flower stalk at a time though there may be 2 or 3 heads. Blooming season:Late Spring/Early Summer. The flower/fruit structure will remain on the plant throughout the summer, gradually fading in colour and eventually rotting away in late fall. Pollination:Fruits are also formed without pollination. + Fruits: The fruit is a small to medium, syncarp (leafy-topped, compound pineapple fruit), formed by the fusion of the ripe ovaries with the base of the sepals and the bracts and with the bark of the floral axis. The skin is tough and waxy, brownish pink to scarlet in colour. The flesh is pink-yellow in colour. The ripe fruit is more or less palatable (depending on clones), but it is smaller (less than one kilo), usually full of seeds, fibrous, lacking in juice and less fleshy than commercial pineapples, but very attractive. + Cultivar The Species Ananas bracteatus has only one cultivar: Red Pineapple or Wild Pineapple.
Red Pineapple flowers
Ananas bracteatus fruit
2.3- Species Ananas comosus(Linnaeus) Merrill - Pineapple + Overview Ananas comosus (Linnaeus) Merrill - Pineapple- Brazil and Paraguay; naturalized in parts of Asia, Africa, Australia, Mexico, Central America, the West Indies, northern South America, and various islands in the Pacific. The pineapple (Ananas comosus) is a tropical plant with edible multiple fruit consisting of coalesced berries, and the most economically significant plant in the Bromeliaceae family. Pineapples may be cultivated from a crown cutting of the fruit, possibly flowering in 20-24 months and fruiting in the following six months. Pineapple does not ripen significantly post-harvest. Pineapples can be consumed fresh, cooked, juiced, and preserved, and are found in a wide array of cuisines. In addition to consumption, the pineapple leaves are used to produce the textile fiber piña in the Philippines, commonly used as the material for the men's Barong Tagalog and women's Baro't saya formal wear in the country. The fiber is also used as a component for wallpaper and other furnishings. + Etymology The word "pineapple" in English was first recorded in 1398, when it was originally used to describe the reproductive organs of conifer trees (now termed pine cones). The term "pine cone" for the reproductive organ of conifer trees was first recorded in 1694. When European explorers discovered this tropical fruit in the Americas, they called them "pineapples" (first so referenced in 1664 due to resemblance to what is now known as the pine cone). In the scientific binomial Ananas comosus, ananas, the original name of the fruit, comes from the Tupi word nanas, meaning "excellent fruit", as recorded by André Thevet in 1555, and comosus, "tufted", refers to the stem of the fruit. Other members of the Ananasgenus are often called "pine", as well, in other languages. + Botany The pineapple is a herbaceousperennial which grows to 1.0 to 1.5 meters (3.3 to 4.9 ft) tall, although sometimes it can be taller. In appearance, the plant itself has a short, stocky stem with tough, waxy leaves. When creating its fruit, it usually produces up to 200 flowers, although some large-fruited cultivars can exceed this. Once it flowers, the individual fruits of the flowers join together to create what is commonly referred to as a pineapple. After the first fruit is produced, side shoots (called 'suckers' by commercial growers) are produced in the leaf axils of the main stem. These may be removed for propagation, or left to produce additional fruits on the original plant. Commercially, suckers that appear around the base are cultivated. It has 30 or more long, narrow, fleshy, trough-shaped leaves with sharp spines along the margins that are 30 to 100 centimeters (1.0 to 3.3 ft) long, surrounding a thick stem. In the first year of growth, the axis lengthens and thickens, bearing numerous leaves in close spirals. After 12 to 20 months, the stem grows into a spike-like inflorescence up to 15 cm (6 in) long with over 100 spirally arranged, trimerous flowers, each subtended by a bract. Flower colors vary, depending on variety, from lavender, through light purple to red. The ovaries develop into berries which coalesce into a large, compact, multiple accessory fruit. The fruit of a pineapple is arranged in two interlocking helices, eight in one direction, thirteen in the other, each being a Fibonacci number. Pineapple carries out CAM photosynthesis, fixing carbon dioxide at night and storing it as the acid malate and then releasing it during the day, aiding photosynthesis. + Cultivars of Pineapple There are many cultivars. The leaves of the commonly grown "smooth cayenne" are smooth and it is the most commonly grown worldwide. Many cultivars have become distributed from its origins in Paraguay and the southern part of Brazil, and later improved stocks were introduced into the Americas, the Azores, Africa, India, Malaysia and Australia. Varieties include: 'Hilo': a compact 1-1.5 kg (2-3 lb) Hawaiian variant of smooth cayenne, the fruit is more cylindrical and produces many suckers, but no slips. 'Kona sugarloaf': 2.5-3 kg (5-6 lb), white flesh with no woodiness in the center, cylindrical in shape, it has a high sugar content but no acid, an unusually sweet fruit. 'Natal queen': 1-1.5 kg (2-3 lb), golden yellow flesh, crisp texture and delicate mild flavor, well-adapted to fresh consumption, keeps well after ripening, spiny leaves, grown in Australia, Malaysia, and South Africa. 'Pernambuco' ('eleuthera'): 1-2 kg (2-4 lb) with pale yellow to white flesh, sweet, melting and excellent for eating fresh, poorly adapted for shipping, spiny leaves, grown in Latin America 'Red Spanish': 1-2 kg (2-4 lb), pale yellow flesh with pleasant aroma, squarish in shape, well-adapted for shipping as fresh fruit to distant markets, spiny leaves, grown in Latin America 'Smooth cayenne': 2.5-3 kg (5-6 lb), pale yellow to yellow flesh, cylindrical in shape, high sugar and acid content, well-adapted to canning and processing, leaves without spines. It is an ancient cultivar developed by Amerind peoples. Until recently, this was the variety from Hawaii, and the most easily obtainable in US grocery stores, but has been replaced by 'MD-2'. It is one of the ancestors of cultivars '73-114' (also called 'MD-2') and '73-50' (also called 'MD-1' and 'CO-2'). Some Ananas species are grown as ornamentals for color, novel fruit size and otheresthetic qualities.
A pineapple, on its parent plant
Ripen Pineapple fruit
Pineapple and its cross section
2.4- Species Ananas
erectifoliusL.B.Sm. + Overview Ananas erectifoliusis a species of plant closely related to the pineapple. The species is native to South America (Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, northern Brazil, French Guiana). The fruit is small and holds little commercial value as food. It is often grown as an ornamental plant or as a houseplant. Its leaves have spines with stripes of colors. The species is closely related to A. lucidus and sometimes regarded as a synonym of that species. The Ananas erectifolius (Syn.: Ananas comosusvar. erectifolius) is an ornamental pineapple cultivar which greatly interests Brazilians and foreign landscapers and flower producers for being an exotic and rustic tropical ornamental plant. The market demand for high quality of cuttings requires efficient methods of propagation and in this context the tissue culture stands out as a viable alternative to obtain plants with genetic and phytossanitary quality in a short time. + Synonyms: Ananas comosus var. erectifolius(L.B.Sm.) Coppens & F.Leal Ananas lucidus Mill.
2.6- Species Ananas macrodontes E.Morren + Overview Ananas macrodontesis a plant species in the Bromeliaceae. It is native to centralSouth America (Brazil,Bolivia,Paraguay,Ecuador, northern Argentina). + Synonyms Ananas sativusvar. macrodontes(E.Morren) Bertoni Pseudananas macrodontes (E.Morren) Harms in H.G.A.Engler & K.A.E.Prantl Pseudananas sagenariusvar. macrodontes(E.Morren) Camargo Bromelia sagenariaArruda Ananas microcephalusBertoni