Fruit from around the globe in your Bay Area backyard

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 This spring we invite you to do a bit of global gardening at home with Guyabano and Moringa trees.

Guyabano trees (Anona muricata) produce green, pear-shaped fruit covered with soft spines. The fruit has many names: graviola, pawpaw, corossol, soursop, and custard apple. It is a popular staple in the Caribbean, Central America, Southeast Asia and South America. Guyabano leaves and seeds are edible. The mature fruit is used as a vegetable and can be cooked and eaten. When the fruit is very ripe it can be eaten raw, as a dessert, or used to make fruit nectar, smoothies, fruit drinks, candies, sorbets, and ice cream. The leaves can be boiled to make a tea or can be crushed and made into a poultice. Rewards come to those who wait because it takes Guyabano trees 3 to 5 years to start producing fruit!

 

Moringa is also called “Miracle Tree” or “Drumstick Tree” or “Benzoil Tree.”This fast growing, drought tolerant tree is native to the foothill Himalayan areas of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. It’s known for its long, slender seed pods and leaves that are eaten as vegetables. The leaves can be eaten raw in salads or smoothies, or cooked and used like spinach. Even when dried and powdered, the leaves retain their vitamins and minerals (Moringa is high in nutrients) and can be added to soups and other foods. The immature green seed pods can be prepared similar to green beans, or if mature, the seeds can be cooked like peas or nuts. Moringa prefers growing in sandy, well-drained soil, and planted in full sun.

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