We live in a world where we eat so many fruits, but most of us would be hard-pressed to explain where the fruits come from. So that the next time you bit into your favorite fruits you’re better acquainted with its roots, we’ve put together a list of 20 fruits and their origins.
The mango is native to South and Southeast Asia. It is the national fruit of India, Pakistan and the Philippines, and the national tree of Bangladesh. Mangoes ripen in the summer.
Coconuts prefer areas with abundant sunlight and regular rainfall. The word coconut derives from 16th century Portuguese and Spanish “coco,” meaning “head” or “skull.” Which is pretty appropriate.
Pumpkins, like other squash, are native to North America. Pumpkins are widely grown for commercial use, and are used both in food and recreation. Pumpkins are a warm-weather crop that is usually planted in early July.
Litchi is a tropical and subtropical fruit tree native to the Guangdong and Fujian provinces of China, and now cultivated in many parts of the world. There are many stories of the fruit’s use as a delicacy in the Chinese Imperial Court.
It is native to the tropics of the Americas, perhaps from southern Mexico and neighbouring Central America. The papaya is a large, tree-like plant, with a single stem growing from 5 to 10 meters (16 to 33 ft) tall, with spirally arranged leaves confined to the top of the trunk.
The kiwifruit, or Chinese gooseberry (sometimes shortened to kiwi outside New Zealand), is the edible berry of a woody vine. Kiwifruit can be grown in most temperate climates with adequate summer heat.
The pineapple is a tropical plant with edible multiple fruit consisting of coalesced berries. The plant is indigenous to South America and is said to originate from the area between southern Brazil and Paraguay.
In Spanish, pineapples are called piña (“pine cone”), or ananá (ananás).
The grapefruit is a subtropical citrus tree known for its sour to semi-sweet fruit. The evergreen grapefruit trees usually grow to be around 5 to 6 meters tall.
The lemon is a small evergreen tree native to Asia. The origin of the lemon is unknown, though lemons are thought to have first grown in Assam (a region in northeast India), northern Burma, and China.
Orange trees are widely grown in tropical and subtropical climates for their sweet fruit. The orange is a hybrid, possibly between pomelo and mandarin, which has been cultivated since ancient times.
Watermelon is a vine-like (scrambler and trailer) flowering plant originally from southern Africa. It is a large, sprawling annual plant with coarse, hairy pinnately-lobed leaves and white to yellow flowers.
The plant has been cultivated in Egypt since at least the 2nd millennium BC, and by the 10th century AD had reached India and China.
Blueberries are perennial flowering plants with indigo-colored berries and are native to North America. Blueberry bushes typically bear fruit in the middle of the growing season.
Fruiting times are affected by local conditions such as altitude and latitude, so the peak of the crop can vary from May to August (in the northern hemisphere) depending upon these conditions.
A banana is an edible fruit and botanically a berry. The fruits grow in clusters hanging from the top of the plant.
They are native to tropical Indomalaya and Australia, and are likely to have been first domesticated in Papua New Guinea.
The apricot is a small tree. Although the apricot is native to a continental climate region with cold winters, it can grow in Mediterranean climates if enough cool winter weather allows a proper dormancy.
The common fig tree has been cultivated since ancient times and grows wild in dry and sunny areas, with deep and fresh soil, and also in rocky areas, from sea level to 1,700 meters.
It prefers light and medium soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The edible fig is one of the first plants that was cultivated by humans.
Guavas are common tropical fruits cultivated and enjoyed in many tropical and subtropical regions. Mature trees of most species are fairly cold-hardy and can survive temperatures slightly colder than 25 °F (−4 °C) for short periods of time, but younger plants will likely freeze to the ground.
Guavas are also of interest to home growers in temperate areas. They are one of the few tropical fruits that can grow to fruiting size in pots indoors.
17. Passion fruit
Passion fruit is a vine species of the passion flower that is native to Brazil, Paraguay and northern Argentina. It is cultivated commercially in tropical and subtropical areas.
Across the world, passion fruit has a variety of uses related to its appealing taste as both a whole fruit and juice.
The peach is a deciduous tree, native to Northwest China. Peaches grow very well in a fairly limited range, since they have a chilling requirement that low altitude tropical areas cannot satisfy.
In tropical and equatorial latitudes, such as Ecuador, Colombia, Ethiopia, India and Nepal, they grow at higher altitudes that can satisfy the chilling requirement.
The pomegranate is a fruit-bearing deciduous shrub or small tree. In the Northern Hemisphere, the fruit is typically in season from September to February, and in the Southern Hemisphere from March to May.
Pomegranates are drought-tolerant, and can be grown in dry areas with either a Mediterranean winter rainfall climate or in summer rainfall climates. In wetter areas, they can be prone to root decay from fungal diseases.
Date palms can take four to eight years after planting before they will bear fruit, and produce viable yields for commercial harvest between seven and 10 years. Dates are an important traditional crop in Iraq, Arabia, and North Africa, west to Morocco.
Dates are also mentioned more than 50 times in the Bible and 20 times in the Qur’an.
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