Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (2023)


Pineapple, Ananas comosus, is an herbaceous biennial or perennial plant in the family Bromeliaceae grown for its edible fruit. The pineapple plant has a short stout stem and a rosette of sword-shaped leaves with needle-like tips. The leaves are waxy, have upturned spines on the margins and may be soild green or striped with red, white or cream. When the plant flowers, the stem begins to elongate and produces a flower head of small purple or red flowers, each with a pointed bract. The stem continues to elongate and sets down a tuft of of short leaves called a 'crown'. Individual fruits develop from the flowers and fuse to form one large cylindrical fruit topped by the crown. This fruit, known as a pineapple, has a tough rind made up of hexagonal units and a fibrous, juicy flesh which may be yellow to white in color. Pineapple may reach 1.5–1.8 m (5–6 ft) in height and some varieties can grow for in excess of 20 years. Pineapple originates from the tropical regions of the Americas.

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (1)

Pineapple fruit

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (2)

Pineapple rind

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (3)

Pineapple flowering

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (4)

Pineapple flowering

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (5)

Pineapple foliage

(Video) Systems-based Pest Management: Propagation Practices

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (6)

Pineapple fruit ripening


Pineapple fruit is commonly eaten fresh or it may be cooked in a variety of dishes. Pineapple may also be canned or used to produce juice.


Basic requirementsPineapple is a tropical plant and grows best in temperatures between 23–32°C (73.4–89.6°F). The plant can tolerate colder temperatures for short periods but will be killed by frosts. Pineapple will grow optimally in well-draining sandy loam which is rich in organic matter. The optimum pH for pineapple growth is between 4.5–6.5. Established pineapple plants are tolerant of drought but will not tolerate waterlogged soil which quickly leads to root rot. PropagationPineapple is propagated from crowns, slips or suckers, with slips or suckers being the preferred method for commercial growers. Pineapple suckers arise from leaf axils, while slips grow from the stalk below the fruit. These are cut from the parent plant and used to produce new plantings. The cuttings are usually cured for a day or two prior to planting by sitting them in the shade. Pineapple plantings are normally set out in double rows with the material staggered 25–30 cm (10–12 in) apart within the double row and allowing a further 60 cm (2 ft) between double rows. General care and maintenancePineapples require supplemental irrigation during dry spells for optimum production. Mulching around the plants will help to conserve soil moisture. Ratooning may also be utilized as a means of encouraging growth. After the first crop of fruit, ratooning the plants will result in new fruit within 18 months. This process may be repeated a second or third time but then the crop will be rotated to prevent build up of disease. Removing suckers and slips from developing plants helps the plant to focus energy on growing the fruit and leads to larger fruit that develops quicker. Pineapples benefit from the application of additional nitrogen and potassium. Application rates depend largely on the type of soil the plants are growing in. Generally, little fertilizer is required during the first few months following planting but requirements increase rapidly in the period leading up to flower development. Fertilizers are usually applied as foliar sprays. HarvestingPineapples are ready to harvest when at least one third of the fruit rind has turned from green to yellow. Fruits are harvested by hand by cutting the crown and peduncle from the plant. The fruit will continue to ripen off of the plant.


Bartholomew, D. P., Rohrbach, K. G. & Evans, D. O. (2002). Pineapple cultivation in Hawaii. University of Hawaii Cooperative Extension Service. Available at: http://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/oc/freepubs/pdf/f_n-7.pdf. [Accessed 27 March 15]. Free to access. CABI Crop Protection Compendium. (2013). Ananas comosus (pineapple) datasheet. Available at: http://www.cabi.org/cpc/datasheet/5392. [Accessed 27 March 15]. Paid subscription required.Crane, J. H. (2013). pineapple growing in the Florida home landscape. Available at: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/mg055. [Accessed 27 March 15]. Free to access. Ploetz, R. C., Zentmyer, G. A., Nishijima, W. T., Rohrbach, K. G. & Ohr, H. D. (eds) (1994). Compendium of Tropical Fruit Diseases. American Phytopathological Society Press. Available at: http://www.apsnet.org/apsstore/shopapspress/Pages/41620.aspx. Available for purchase from APS Press.

Common Pests and Diseases


Category : Bacterial

Bacterial heart rot and fruit collapse Erwinia chrysanthemi


Water-soaked lesions on the white basal sections of leaves in the central whorl which may spread to all leaves in the central whorl; midportions of leaves become olive green in color with a bloated appearance; infected fruits exude juices and the shell becomes olive green; cavities form within the fruit

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Disease is thought to be spread from the juices of infected fruits; bacteria in the juice can enter leaves through wounds; ants acts as vectors for the bacteria


Remove and destroy infected fruits; avoid the use of infected crowns for seed material to prevent spread of the disease; planting to avoid flowering when adjacent field is fruiting can reduce disease development; use of miticides and control of ants can significantly reduce disease incidence

Category : Fungal

Butt rot, Black rot & White leaf spot Chalara paradoxa


Soft black rot which begins at the area where the seed piece detaches from the mother plant; entire seed piece may be rotted; black rot of fruit causes a soft, watery rot which darkens with time; small brown, wet spots develop on leaves; leaf spots enlarge and turn gray-brown with light brown margins




Fungus survives in soil and pineapple residue; infects plants through fresh wounds


Seed material should be stored on mother plants during dry weather and with good air circulation; freshly removed seed material should be dipped in an appropriate fungicide within 12 hours of removal from the mother plant; avoiding bruising and wounding of fruit during harvest helps to reduce black rot; harvested fruit should be dipped in an appropriate fungicide within 6-12 hours of harvest to prevent disease development during shipping

Category : Other

Marbling Acetobacter spp.
Erwinia herbicola


Yellow to red or very dark brown discoloration of fruit flesh; infected tissues develop a granular texture with woody consistency and speckled color; single or multiple fruitlets may be affected; vascular system may appear speckled right down to core of fruit; symptoms develop during the last month of fruit maturation




Emergence of the disease is favored by warm, wet weather


There are currently no methods of controlling the disease; the pineapple variety Smooth Cayenne appears to be moderately resistant to the disease

Category : Viral

Mealybug wilt Pineapple wilt virus (PWV)

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (7)

Pineapple plants infected with mealybug wilt

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Leaves turning red; tips of leaves become withered and turn brown; plants can be easily removed from the soil




Virus is transmitted by mealybugs; ants protect mealybug populations from predators and parasites and can allow mealybugs populations to reach very damaging levels if left uncontrolled


Ants should be controlled with an appropriate insecticide

Category : Oomycete

Phytophthora heart and root rot Phytophthora spp.

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (8)

Phytophthora symptoms on pineapple

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (9)

Pineapple heart rot

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (10)

Phytophthora symptoms on pineapple fruit

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Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (11)

Symptoms of Phytophthora root rot in pineapple field

Diseases and Pests, Description, Uses, Propagation (12)

Symptoms of Phytophthora root rot in pineapple field


Young leaves failing to elongate and turning chlorotic; heart leaves wilting and turning brown; terminal whorl can be easily pulled from mother plant; water-soaked tissue at base of leaves; foul smell; leaves may be turning red and yellow with necrotic leaf margins and leaf tips; plants can easily be pulled out of the ground; fruits color prematurely




Fungi can survive in soil and plant debris for many years


Planting in raised beds helps to drain the soil and reduces incidence of the disease; mulch from pineapple debris should be avoided; pre-planting dips and foliar applications of Fosetyl Al are very effective at controlling the disease


Category : Insects

Mealybugs (Pineapple mealybug) Dysmicoccus brevipes


Flattened oval to round disc-like insect covered in waxy substance on tree branches; insects attract ants which may also be present; insect colony may also be associated with growth of sooty mold due to fungal colonization of sugary honeydew excreted by the insect; plants may show symptoms of mealybug wilt (see entry)




Insects have a wide host range; often tended by ants which farm them for their sugary honeydew secretions; transmit mealybug wilt in pineapple


Mealybugs can potentially be controlled by natural enemies such as lady beetles; ant populations which tend the mealybugs should be treated with an appropriate insecticide

(Video) Propagation Media


How do you identify plant pests and diseases? ›

Identifying Pests: During the growth of your garden, keep an eye out for any obvious bite marks or colonies of bugs. Be sure to check the underside of leaves and along plant stems. Identifying the bite marks and the plants the occur on may be all you need to identify the pest.

Which disease can be cured by the orange answer? ›

Now, as then, oranges and other citrus fruits are delicious snacks that deliver powerful nutrients and antioxidants and provide multiple health benefits, such as reducing the risk of some cancers, stroke, and cardiovascular disease.

How do you propagate an orange tree from a cutting? ›

Place the cuttings in a free draining mix such a 50/50 seed raising and pumice mix, water the mix well, avoid using garden soil as it can have soil borne diseases. Reduce the leaf area by half, dip the cutting into rooting hormone available from garden centres and DIY stores, and place the cutting into the mix.

What are the diseases of lemon? ›

The most common diseases in these areas are melanose, lemon scab, brown rot, collar rot, sooty blotch, Phytophthora root rots and Armillaria. In these regions lemon trees require regular application of protectant copper sprays in order to keep fruit clean.

What are the common pests and diseases of plants? ›

  • Overview.
  • 7.1.1 Fruit borers.
  • 7.1.2 Fruit-piercing moths.
  • 7.1.3 Leaf-feeding caterpillars.
  • 7.1.4 Leafrollers.
  • 7.1.5 Beetle borers.
  • 7.1.6 Scarab beetles.
  • 7.1.7 Soft scales.

Why is my orange tree leaking sap? ›

This is a fungus or a complex of fungi and yeast that colonize the sap that leaks from a tree wound. The primary fungus involved that gives this slime its orange color is Fusicolla merismoides (formerly called Fusarium merismoides).

How do you get rid of black mold on an orange tree? ›

Once all pests are controlled, the sooty mold will usually wear away on its own. You can help speed the process by spraying the tree with a strong stream of water, or water with a little detergent mixed in. A timely rainfall will do a world of good.

Why are my oranges turning black? ›

Citrus black spot (CBS) is a citrus disease caused by the fungus Phyllosticta citricarpa (previously known as Guignardia citricarpa). This fungus affects citrus plants throughout subtropical climates, reducing both fruit quantity and quality.

What is the best way to propagate fruit trees? ›

The most common method of propagating fruit trees, suitable for nearly all species, is grafting onto rootstocks. This in essence involves physically joining part of a shoot of a hybrid cultivar onto the roots of a different but closely related species or cultivar, so that the two parts grow together as one plant.

Why is my lemon tree leaking sap? ›

Answer: Gummosis is the oozing of sap from wounds or cankers on fruit trees. It can result from environmental stress, mechanical injury, or disease and insect infestation.

Why are my lemon leaves turning yellow? ›

Very often the yellow leaves or chlorosis on a citrus tree is caused by over watering or a nutrient deficiency. Citrus need regular water especially in the warm months but over watering can leach nutrients from the soil and cause root rot. If the roots are damaged they can't take up the nutrients the plant needs.

Why is my lemon tree turning black? ›

Sooty mold is a fungus, which causes the blackening of the leaves of citrus trees. The mold forms on the leaves as a result of honeydew secretions from insects such as whiteflies, aphids and mealybugs. Insect control is the most effective way to prevent the incidence of this disease.

What are the diseases of pests? ›

Public Health Issues Caused by Pests
  • Vector-Borne Diseases - Infectious diseases such as Zika virus, Lyme disease, and rabies can be carried and spread by vectors. ...
  • Asthma and Allergies - Indoor household pests such as cockroaches can trigger asthma and allergy symptoms.
Jul 26, 2022

What pests are known for diseases? ›

The most common insects that pass on disease are mosquitoes, sand flies, ticks, and fleas. For example, mosquitoes are known for spreading the Zika virus, Yellow Fever, and Malaria. Ticks are known to spread Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

What are 4 types of pests? ›

Pests can be broken into four main categories
  • Vertebrate Pests. Have a backbone. Examples: Rodents, birds, reptiles, and other mammals.
  • Invertebrate Pests. No backbone. Examples: Insets, spiders, ticks, slugs.
  • Weeds. Any plant growing out of place.
  • Diseases. Fungi, bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms.
Jun 30, 2022

What are the 4 types of diseases with examples? ›

There are four main types of disease: infectious diseases, deficiency diseases, hereditary diseases (including both genetic diseases and non-genetic hereditary diseases), and physiological diseases.

What are the 3 types of causes of plant disease? ›

Disease Triangle

These three are the virulent pathogen (one that can cause disease), a susceptible host (plant) and suitable environmental conditions.

What are the 4 common diseases? ›

Common Illnesses
  • Allergies.
  • Colds and Flu.
  • Conjunctivitis ("pink eye“)
  • Diarrhea.
  • Headaches.
  • Mononucleosis.
  • Stomach Aches.

Why do farmers spray water on oranges? ›

So, when a freeze is forecast for a citrus farm, the farmers often spray the trees with water. When the temperature drops, this water freezes and releases heat to its environment, some of which is the still-ripening fruit. This heat is enough to preserve the fruit inside from freezing.

Why is my tree leaking black sap? ›

That “black stuff” is the result of a bacterial infection called Wetwood or Slime Flux. These particular bacteria thrive in anaerobic (low oxygen) conditions present in the dense interior hardwood. As the anaerobic bacteria ferment and release carbon dioxide, it creates pressure forcing liquid from woods in the trunk.

Can I spray my orange tree with soapy water? ›

Insecticidal soap solutions work on soft-bodied orange tree pests, such as aphids, mites and whiteflies. To make insecticidal soap, mix 3 tablespoons of soap flakes with 1 gallon of water.

How do you treat citrus snow scales? ›

Horticultural oil kills the scales through suffocation. Where plants can be sprayed, complete spray coverage of infested plant parts with horticultural oil at the proper time provides good control of most scales.

How do you treat tree mold? ›

How To Eliminate Tree Fungus
  1. Vinegar Spray – You can create a highly effective fungicide by combining one tablespoon of vinegar with one gallon of water. ...
  2. Baking Soda Spray – make this spray by dissolving 1 teaspoon of baking soda into one quart of water. ...
  3. Milk Spray – This remedy is one of the simplest!

How do you treat orange slime mold? ›

Slime mold, as well as any mushrooms or toadstools, can be knocked out with baking soda, potassium bicarbonate, cornmeal, cornmeal tea, hydrogen peroxide, or commercial products like BioSafe Disease Control. Physical disturbances, such as mowing the grass or scratching the slime mold in beds, are also effective.

Can you cut mold off an orange? ›

Fruits and vegetables, FIRM

Cut off at least 1 inch around and below the mold spot (keep the knife out of the mold itself so it will not cross-contaminate other parts of the produce). Small mold spots can be cut off FIRM fruits and vegetables with low moisture content. It's difficult for mold to penetrate dense foods.

Why do blood oranges bleed? ›

Blood oranges are 'bloody' from a pigment called anthocyanin, which is widely found in the plant kingdom and can appear red as in cherries and red cabbage to blue as in blueberries and cornflowers or even purple as in pansies and eggplants (aubergines).

How do you keep orange peels from rotting? ›

  1. Use a paring knife to remove as much of the white pith as you can.
  2. Place the peels in a sauce pot and cover with water.
  3. Bring to a boil and boil gently for 10 minutes. ...
  4. Remove the peels to a plate.
  5. Mix 1 cup of sugar with 2 cups of water and bring to a low boil.
  6. Place peels in the syrup and simmer for 45 mins.
Feb 28, 2021

How do you plant lime seeds? ›

Soak the seeds overnight in water and plant them 1/2 inch deep in moist potting soil. Cover the pot with a plastic bag or wrap and let it sit in a warm and sunny spot for a few weeks until the seeds start to grow. Then, remove the plastic but keep the pot near a warm and sunny window as the seedlings grow.

Can you graft a lime to a lemon tree? ›

Also known as a cocktail tree, the lemon lime tree is an incredible plant: it grows both lemons and limes! Through grafting or planting two trees in the same pot, the Meyer lemon and the classic key lime combine into one tree, and one single delicious fruit.

How do you propagate lemon lime Ficus? ›

Ficus Altissima Propagating

To propagate your plant, place these cuttings upright in a sterilized glass container of clean water and a little Propagation Promoter and put it in a bright place. Keep the water topped off and change it out once per week.

How do you propagate citrus rootstock? ›

The bottom of the rootstock is chopped off before application of the rooting hormone. Chopping the end off of the rootstock. Then the grafted cuttings are dipped in a powdered rooting hormone and planted in a rooting medium. Applying the rooting hormone and planting the grafted citrus cuttings.

What is the best way to propagate an apple tree? ›

Apples are usually propagated by budding or grafting onto a hardy rootstock. Typically, cuttings (scion) are taken in January, refrigerated, and then grafted onto rootstock in the early spring.

What kind of trees should be propagated? ›

Several woody trees, shrubs and vines can be propagated by hardwood stem cuttings. Plants that can be propagated by this method include willow, poplar, dogwood, forsythia, wisteria, grape, currant, gooseberry and elderberry.

What are 4 types of propagating trees? ›

The major methods of asexual propagation are cuttings, layering, division, budding and grafting. Cuttings involve rooting a severed piece of the parent plant; layering involves rooting a part of the parent and then severing it; and budding and grafting is joining two plant parts from different varieties.

Is it OK to spray lemon water on plants? ›

Spray Plants with Diluted Lemon Juice

While lemon juice is safe for pets to ingest, they don't like the smell of citrus-which makes lemon juice a natural deterrent. (It's also perfectly safe for plants.)

Can you put Epsom salt on a lemon tree? ›

Because Epsom salt is a form of magnesium, it is an effective and convenient soil amendment for treating magnesium deficiency in lemon trees. It is important that your lemon tree has enough magnesium in order to thrive and produce fruit for years to come.

What is best fertilizer for lemon tree? ›

Down to Earth Organic Citrus Fertilizer is the best lemon tree fertilizer for good reason. It's a granular fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 6-3-3 that is applied three to four times per year, which is great for lemon trees! It also contains secondary nutrients like calcium, sulfur, zinc, and iron.

Should yellowing leaves be removed? ›

Removing the leaf will let the plant focus its nutrients on healthy leaves. A yellow leaf has lost its chlorophyll (pigment) and it can't turn green again even after you correct the problem.

What do you spray on lemon leaves? ›

Use about a cup of ordinary cooking oil, a half a cup of water and a tiny amount of ordinary washing-up detergent. This is known as white oil. Put it in water, so it's about 40 parts water to one of this mixture. Stir it up and spray it on.

When should you not water a lemon tree? ›


A newly potted plant needs to be watered well every alternate day – deep watering is essential so that the root ball gets the necessary hydration. Once the plant is somewhat established, watering can be tapered to twice a week and then once a week or so.

Should I Mist lemon tree? ›

Keeping humidity high for your citrus is especially important indoors in the winter. Misting your plants once or twice a day during the cold months will keep the foliage lush and help to ward off insects. You will want to keep your citrus moderately moist but not soggy.

Should I remove damaged leaves from lemon tree? ›

Also, if aphids or leafminers or other insects have damaged the leaves of your citrus tree, don't waste your time cutting those damaged leaves out. They're still capable of photosynthesizing and contributing to the growth and fruitfulness of the tree even though they're not completely healthy.

How are pests identified? ›

Features such as the colors of the pest, the shape of its wings, shape and color of the eggs, specific features (spots, dots, lines) on the body of the pest etc. – these can all help you identify the pest correctly and even distinguish between different species.

What is the first step in identifying a plant disease? ›

Proper plant identification. Identification of affected plants is one of the first steps in diagnosing a plant disease. Both scientific and common names of the plant should be noted.

How can you identify the presence of pests? ›

What are the Signs of Pest Infestation?
  1. Droppings. Droppings are an obvious sign that a pest may be living or roaming in your area of work. ...
  2. Footprints. Footprints are another obvious sign of the presence of pests in a location. ...
  3. Damage to Property and Equipment. ...
  4. Nests. ...
  5. Foul or Unusual Odour. ...
  6. Insects. ...
  7. Rodents. ...
  8. Birds.
May 20, 2022

What three ways can a plant disease can be identified? ›

Identifying Plant Disease
  • Stunted growth – stunted growth can be a key indicator of plant disease. ...
  • Spots on leaves – infection can lead to spots (black spot) on leaves.
  • Areas of decay – leaves can often decay and rot in certain areas.
  • Growths – there may be unusual bumps and growths from the plant.

What are five types of pests? ›

Five Groups of Pests

Arthropods - Insects, Mites, Ticks and Spiders 2. Vertebrates - Animals with backbones 3. Weeds 4. Pathogens - Disease-causing organisms 5.

How do you control insect pests and diseases? ›

The best way to control both pests and diseases is to keep plants healthy.
  1. Build healthy soil. Healthy soil provides a home to friendly insects and helps prevent many plant diseases.
  2. Plant resistant varieties. ...
  3. Space plants correctly. ...
  4. Plant at the right times.
Nov 17, 2022

What are the 3 factors needed in order for a plant disease to occur? ›

Plant diseases– their occurrence and severity– result from the impact of three factors: the host plant, the pathogen, and the environmental conditions. This is represented with the disease triangle. If any one of the three factors is missing, the triangle is not complete, no disease will occur.

What three things must be present for a disease to develop in plants? ›

By understanding that three things are required for plant disease--host plant, pathogen, and favorable environment--we can use a three-pronged approach to manage plant diseases.

What are the 3 components necessary in order for a disease to occur in any plant? ›

The three components are:
  • a susceptible host plant.
  • a virulent pathogen.
  • a favorable environment.

What are common pests? ›

Ants are one of the most common household pests. Social critters, they often live in colonies that can consist of thousands of members. Some of the most common species include carpenter ants, argentine ants, black house ants, and garden ants.

How many types of pests are there? ›

There are approximately 70 000 pest species and diseases that damage agricultural crops worldwide (Pimentel, 2009).

What is the best way to prevent a pest infestation? ›

Tips For Preventing Pest Infestation
  1. Regularly Dispose of Trash. ...
  2. Patch Exterior Holes. ...
  3. Store Food in Secure Containers. ...
  4. Deep Clean the Home. ...
  5. Reexamine Your Landscaping. ...
  6. Sanitize Soft Surfaces, Too.
Nov 21, 2022


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