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Fruit has green, scaly exterior with numerous "eyes". Inside is white, juicy flesh surrounding the inedible black seeds. It is a very nutritious fruit containing significant amount of carbohydrates, dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. The antioxidants and phytonutrients present in cherimoya aid in the prevention of oxidative stress-induced diseases such as cancer, heart diseases, and aging.
Grown in USDA Zone 9-11, Annona cherimola (Cherimoya) is a small tree, reaching 10-20 ft in height and width. It is native to Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia, but is commercially grown in Australia, South America, Asia, Spain, Italy, and California. This fruit tree prefers much sun, though it can tolerate some semi-shade. It requires regular water and moderate fertilizer to thrive.
The cherimoya fruit is said to be one of the best-tasting fruits in the world, with a creamy pulp and sweet fruity flavor. The pulp is eaten fresh, out of hand, and the seeds are toxic, with the potential to work as an insecticide when crushed. On the tree, the cherimoya fruit is large, ranging from 4-8 inches in length, sometimes weighing more than 5 pounds. Additionally, the antioxidants and phytonutrients present in the cherimoya fruit are known to aid the prevention of oxidative stress-induced diseases.
Cherimoyas prefer a warm environment, with summer temperatures of 65-80F and winter temperatures of 40-65F. They also require hand pollination due to their inability to be fertilized by their own pollen. When grown outside of its native region, trees must be babied in cold months and kept away from frost. Within 3-4 years they will begin to bear fruit, blooming with clusters of small flowers in late winter to early summer, and ripening their fruit from October to May. Fruits are ready for harvest when their skin slightly yellow or pale green, or when it gives a bit when touched.
Atemoyas are small-to-medium-size trees growing to about twenty-five to thirty feet at maturity with about the same spread. Flowers are produced along with new growth in the spring following a winter dormancy period, and the fruit usually begin maturing in late August through the end of October. Atemoyas look very similar in some cases to sugar apples, except they have a smoother skin and the individual segments aren't quite as obvious. Most atemoyas have fewer seeds, too, than sugar apples, which makes them a lot easier to eat as a fresh fruit.
It is a rare Anonna. Large fruit, sometimes over 6" long, having similarities in both shape and size to the Annona cherimola. The rind tends to be either green or pink-purple, with white or pinkish flesh respectively. Some varieties have deep red flesh. Flavor is said to be excellent in many varieties, rivaling that of the cherimoya and sugar apple. Ilama is the most cold sensitive of all the Annona. Typically fruits mature from July to December. The fruit is almost always eaten raw, out of hand. It grows best in climates having a dry season, followed by heavy rainfall. Ilama fruits perish within days of harvest and the fruit transports very poorly, hence its relative obscurity to much of the world.
The Annona glabra (Pond apple tree) is a small tree with an open, spreading habit that can reach a height of 10-20 ft. It grows well in full sun and semi-shade and requires regular water during the growing season. The tree loves heat and is drought and flood tolerant, making it resilient and adaptable to various growing conditions.
The tree produces fragrant, yellow-orange flowers and edible fruits. The fruit is round, 1-2 inches wide, with a green, waxy skin and a creamy, yellow pulp. Rich in vitamins A and C, fiber, and antioxidants, the fruit has a sweet and tart flavor with a musky, pineapple-like taste. The fruit can be eaten out-of-hand, cooked, or made into drinks or jellies.
The pond apple tree is a great choice for home gardens and landscaping in USDA zones 9-11. In colder regions, it's best to grow the tree in a pot and bring it indoors when the temperature falls below freezing. The tree does not require pruning to produce abundant fruits, and depending on the season and the number of trees around, it can produce up to 20 fruits at a time.
Pond apple also has a wide range of medicinal benefits. The juice of the fruit is believed to be effective in treating rheumatism and various skin diseases. The bark is composed of triterpenes, which have anti-inflammatory properties, and the leaves are used to treat diarrhea and colic. With its numerous uses and health benefits, Pond apple is an excellent addition to a home garden and a great way to bring a piece of the southeastern swamp to your yard.
Pond apple is native to swamplands and provides an important food source for wildlife in this region. Although not as tasty as its tropical relatives, pond apple can stand flooding and spend weeks at a time with its roots under water.
Even though it is widely distributed in the Amazonia lowland rainforests between Colombia and Bolivia, Annona hypoglauca is a very rare species, especially in cultivation.
This subtropical shrub or small tree, bears a close resemblance to other annonas. The fruit is the size of an apple with sweet pulp, melting like ice cream. Propagated by seed.
Mountain Soursop, Wild Custard Apple, Guanabana de monte, Wild Soursop. The fruit resembles Soursop but with less sugar and has distinctive pineapple flavor. The tree is small, evergreen, growing up to 20ft tall.
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Grow Your Own Food: Annona montana - Mountain Soursop. Exotic fruit, a cold hardy alternative to a Soursop.
Season: All year, best during warm months. Origin: Tropical America. One of the most delicious annona. Fruit is sweet with slight sour addition, flavor is the best. Sweet and tart custard-like pulp. Extremely cold sensitive, minimum temperature 50F. Makes a superb milkshake, but can be eaten fresh as well. The tree is medium sized, very fast growing. Can be kept in a pot. We have very interesting article about growing and fruiting Soursop in apartment. Check out Tropical Treasures Magazine # 7.