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Pouteria caimito - (Ruiz & Pav.) Radlk.

Common Name Abiu, Yellow Star Apple
Family Sapotaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Forests, especially in areas that are seasonally flooded, and by the coast, at elevations from sea level to 1,500 metres[420 ].
Range S. America - Brazil, Bolivia and Peru, north to the Caribbean and through C. America to Costa Rica.
Edibility Rating    (4 of 5)
Other Uses    (2 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (0 of 5)
Care
Tender Moist Soil Wet Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Pouteria caimito Abiu, Yellow Star Apple


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Pouteria caimito Abiu, Yellow Star Apple
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Summary

Pouteria caimito or known in various common names such as Abiu and Yellow Star Apple is a tropical medium-sized tree growing about 10-15 m high and 30 cm in trunk diameter. It is cultivated for its bright yellow fruits with translucent flesh that has a jelly-like consistency and sweet flavor. When fully ripe, it is consumed raw or used in desserts and salads. The oblong to elliptic leaves are simple and arranged in alternate order. The flowers may occur singly or in clusters of two to five flowers. The crown is dense and the trunk is straight. Abiu is used medicinally for coughs, bronchitis, fever, and diarrhea. The wood is heavy and hard, moderately resistant to insect attack , and moderately durable. It is used for construction and external work. The plant is not tolerant to frost. Propagation can be through seed sowing, grafting, budding, or air layering.


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of cone
Pouteria caimito is an evergreen Tree growing to 15 m (49ft) by 15 m (49ft) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 10. The plant is self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid and neutral soils and can grow in very acid soils.
It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist or wet soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Achras caimito Ruiz & Pav. Achras guapeda Casar. Caleatia caimito (Ruiz & Pav.) Mart. ex Steud. Guap

Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses:

The fully ripe fruit has a delicious flavour - it is eaten raw or used in sherbets and ice cream[301 , 317 ]. It goes particularly well in fruit salads, especially if they contain orange slices to add acidity[301 ]. A lovely bright yellow fruit with a whitish, translucent flesh that has a jelly-like consistency and a sweetish flavour[301 ]. The fruit has a flavour somewhat like a rambutan[296 ]. It is up to 10cm in diameter[296 ]. Fruit that is not fully ripe can contain a milky latex that sticks to the lips[301 ]. The fruit has a thin skin that bruises easily, so the fruit will not store for more than a few days[296 ].

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


None known

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Other Uses

Other Uses: The wood is heavy, hard, straight-grained, of medium texture[420 ]. It is moderately resistant to insect attack, and moderately durable[420 ]. It is used for construction and external work[420 ].

Special Uses

Cultivation details

A tree of the hot, wet, tropical lowlands, it requires a year-round moist and warm climate[335 , 377 ]. Plants are intolerant of frost[335 ]. Succeeds in full sun and in dappled shade[420 ]. Grows well in wet soils[377 ]. Prefers an acid soil[335 ]. Seedling trees take up to 8 years before they start to fruit, and some are very shy fruiters[296 ]. It is therefore best to propagate vegetatively from good fruiting forms[296 ]. Grafted plants can fruit in 3 - 4 years[335 ]. Good forms can fruit twice a year[296 ]. Mature trees may produce anywhere from 100 - 1,000 fruits a year[377 ]. A large tree, it is best kept pruned to about 4 metres tall in order to make fruit harvest easier[296 ]. There are some named varieties[301 ]. The quality of the fruits is much higher in recent selected strains[317 ]. Some forms are self-fertile, though others need cross-pollination[335 ].

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Propagation

Seed - remove it from its husk before sowing[200 ]. Best sown as soon as it is ripe[420 ]. Sow in a nursery seedbed in semi-shade. When sown fresh, the seed usually germinates in 4 - 6 weeks, with a reasonable percentage germinating[377 , 420 ]. Side-grafting. Air-layering may be possible[200 ].

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Abiero, Aguaycillo, Asepokoballi, Caimitillo, Caimo, Cauje, Coloradillo de la bajura, Ingi-oedoe, Luma, Pepeboiti, Temare, Yaas, Yellow star apple, caimito.

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Costa Rica; Panama; French Guiana; Guyana; Suriname; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of; Bolivia, Plurinational State of; Colombia; Ecuador; Peru; Nicaragua; Trinidad and Tobago; Brazil, Amazon, Andes, Australia, Bolivia*, Brazil*, Central America, Hawaii, Nicaragua, Pacific, Panama, South America, Suriname, USA, Venezuela,

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Pouteria altissimaAbam, Apotro, GomuTree35.0 10-12 MLMHNDM004
Pouteria campechianaCanistel, EggfruitTree15.0 10-12 FLMHNDMWe422
Pouteria guianensisAsepoko.Tree25.0 10-12 MLMHNM202
Pouteria pierreiAningeriaTree30.0 10-12 MLMHNM204
Pouteria sapotaSapote, Mamey SapoteTree25.0 10-12 MMHNM422

 

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Author

(Ruiz & Pav.) Radlk.

Botanical References

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here
A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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