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Discover jackfruit

 

Last updated 5/24/2018 at 2:09pm

Roger Boddaert

Cesar at Major market holds a jackfruit in the produce section.

Jackfruit or artocarpus heterophyllus is a unique and interesting fruit that is known as the largest tree-borne fruit in the world. It is from the mulberry family. For the first time, I have seen them at Major market in Fallbrook, and they are a real show-stopper.

Jackfruit originated in southern India and Southeast Asia and is grown in the tropical regions around the world. Today, it is being grown in some tropical regions of Mexico and is being imported to the states.

One fruit can weigh up to 70 pounds plus with 40-50 fruits per tree. These large oval-shaped fruits hang on rigid rope-like stems suspended from the trees' husky branches and the main trunk and are a real eye-catcher to see in photographs.

Its flavor is compared to an exotic combination of pineapple, banana and a tang of cherimoya and mang. I have been told it is an acquired taste.

The interior flesh is very fibrous containing large seeds that can be roasted like chestnuts. Growing new plants from these seeds are also possible for those wanting to experiment in a new adventure of horticulture, but the trees are frost tender. Its outer skin is covered with a spiny texture.

In tropical lands, the tree can obtain heights of more than 60 feet, and the wood has some timber value in Asia.

The fruit is high in vitamins and minerals and also considered a healthy food source in the tropical areas of the world. It is the national tree of Bangladesh.

These trees are a real exotic and require some TLC to get them growing in frost-free zones.

Roger Boddaert, the Tree Man of Fallbrook, can be reached at (760) 728-4297.

 

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