In a recent trial of granular Polysulphate fertilizer in Malaysia, the pineapple plants fertilized with granular Polysulphate showed fewer symptoms of potassium deficiency, and produced fruits that matured earlier and were sweeter.
Pineapple production in Malaysia has long been a significant source of income to farmers. But Malaysia’s dominance as a big international player in pineapples in the 1970’s was lost. However now Malaysian policy is to increase productivity in order to meet rising local, let alone international, demand for this fruit.
Putting Polysulphate to the test
Heavy, juicy and sweet fruit production needs perfect crop nutrition. A trial for Polysulphate was carried out in Simpang Renggam, Johor, Malaysia between January and May earlier this year. On a control plot 500kg/ha of compound fertilizer (12-12-17 and 2MgO) was used to compare with a plot of pineapples which had 500 kg/ha Polysulphate applied during flowering.
Picking up the results
The results of the trial are summarized in the film 'Polysulphate fertilizer trial on pineapple in Malaysia' on our YouTube channel. As well as looking better, with less symptoms of potassium deficiency, and maturing earlier there are also good results within the fruit. A Brix test, which measures sugar content, revealed that the pineapples fertilized with granular Polysulphate were almost 25% sweeter than fruit from the plot treated with conventional fertilizer.
Furthermore, using Polysulphate fertilizer helped to give pineapples longer shelf life and the proportion of Grade A fruit harvested increased by 11%.