Eugenia victoriana (Myrtaceae)
English: sundrop, guayabilla
Origin and Distribution
The sundrop is from northern South America. It is sporadically planted in other tropical regions.
Shrub or small tree, less than 10 feet (3 m) tall. Leaves elliptical, opposite, up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide and 5 inches (12.5 cm) long, with sunken veins. Flowers are perfect, small, and white, and borne singly or in axillary or terminal clusters of two or three. Fruits are large, spheroid to oblate (flattened), 3 to 4 inches (7.6 to 10 cm) in diameter, with a thin, shiny orange skin. The pulp is bright orange , sour and very aromatic. There are 2 to 4 seeds per fruit.
Propagation and Culture
Sundrop is grown from seed, taking about a month to germinate. Trees grow well in acid soil and prefer moisture and high organic matter content. Flowering and fruiting occurs in 3 to 4 years. Fruits ripen throughout the summer, from May through October. No pruning is required, and sundrop will fruit in a pot.
Cultivars and Related Species
No named cultivars of sundrop are known. Sundrop is related to other members of the Myrtaceae family, including araza (Eugenia stipitata), Surinam cherry (Eugenia stipitata), guava (Psidium guajava).
Sundrop is very sour, and is best used to make a delicious juice. The fruit can be deseeded and frozen, then blended with water and sweetener for juice which is very aromatic, bright orange, and reminiscent of passion fruit juice.
Gardens, Hwy 120 Km 18.9, Box 692, Maricao, Puerto Rico 00606 USA
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