Friday, May 29, 2015

Cherry Guavas

Once winter comes there is often only the memories of fresh fruit and hopefully the rows of Vacola jars and tubs of dried fruit to keep those going. However we have found a tree that produces an abundance of succulent fruit that ripens in early winter. This is the Cherry Guava (Psidium cattleianum).
It is an evergreen bushy shrub that grows to 3 - 6 m in height and originates from Brazil. Its leaves are smooth, glossy, leathery and about 5 - 8 cm long. The fruits are the size of a small plum and a round shape about 2.5 - 4 cm in diameter. When they are ripe they go a deep wine-red or even purple colour and feel soft. They are very juicy and despite the seeds are delicious to eat whole. Our Cherry guavas obviously like a sandy loam soil with decent drainage and can tolerate frosts up to about minus 5. Apparently the fruits are about the richest source of Vitamin C there is and make excellent jams and jellies. We generally just snack on them by the tubful. Yum.

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