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Meet the 10-year-old girl who grew a pineapple in northern B.C.

Emily Atkins discovers it takes a lot of patience to grow tropical fruit in a temperate climate

It takes a lot of patience to grow a pineapple in Smithers.

Ten-year-old Emily Atkins learned the hard way that it takes a long time to grow tropical fruit in a temperate climate.

It was three-and-half years ago that she was enjoying a pineapple when her dad told her she could try to grow one from the scraps.

“One day we were having a pineapple and my dad was telling me that if you chop off the top and put in water until the roots start to grow, then you can plant it in some dirt and it will grow and eventually you’ll have a new pineapple,” she said.

What neither of them knew was just how long they would have to nurture it.

But they kept it inside by a sunny window and watched it slowly grow.

“I didn’t think it was going to happen and some leaves starting forming into a ball and got flowers, it was really neat,” she said.

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She added some of the challenges included keeping it warm in the winter months, so they put a heat lamp near it.

Patience and persistence finally paid off and they were able to grow a small but fully-formed fruit.

“It was only the size of an apple but it was fully grown,” Emily explained. “It tasted like a normal pineapple.”

They decided to cut the top of that one and put it in some water and will try again to grow another one.

“I thought it was pretty neat, growing a pineapple where we live,” she said.

And advice for someone else who wants to try? She said be very patient.

Their adventure in food security is far from over as Emily and her brother Daniel continue to harvest their love for growing fruit.

They’ve already grown watermelon and cantaloupe and the family is now starting to grow lemon trees. Her brother is currently trying to grow an apple tree from a seed of an apple he ate.

READ EVEN MORE: Northwest B.C. food security forum discusses ‘Granny Gardens,’ goats and more

Their mom, Tammy Atkins is very excited for them when their experiments come to fruition.

“I’m very proud of them,” she said. “It is neat seeing your kids try stuff and it works. And they get excited that they can eat the fruits of their labour.”


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Marisca Bakker

About the Author: Marisca Bakker

Marisca was born and raised in Ontario and moved to Smithers almost ten years ago on a one-year contract.
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