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Common name: Olive
Botanical name: Olea europaea
Family: Oleaceae
Origin: Mediterranean Basin
Avg. Height X Width: 25' x 25'
Varieties: Arbequina (Spanish), Frantoio (Italian), Koroneiki (Greek)
Season: Late summer through fall
Damage temp: 22 F

Comments: With a history dating back more than 5,000 years olives have been and remain a fruit crop of incredible significance throughout the Mediterranean Basin. The trees are highly ornamental with densely foliated rounded canopies and small silver/green leaves. Most olive varieties require a significant amount of cold weather to produce fruit, but the varieties we offer are subtropical and have fruited as far south as Sarasota, FL. Being new to us we can not say for sure if they will fruit as far south as Miami, but we are optimistic. The fruit turn from green to black when ripe and are naturally bitter. They are typically cured in a brine solution to make them more palatable.

Common name: Papaya
Botanical name: Carica Papaya
Family: Caricaceae
Origin: Tropical America
Avg. Height X Width: 6' x 5'
Varieties: Red Lady
Season: year round
Damage temp: 30 F

Comments: Papaya has an enzyme that soothes the stomach and calms indigestion. The fruit is commonly consumed as a breakfast food, and it is often juiced as well. Red Lady is a dwarf self pollinating variety that is also especially resistant to papaya ring spot virus. The fruit typically weigh four to six pounds, and it has excellent flavor, aroma, and texture. Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Passion Fruit
Botanical name: Passiflora edulis
Family: Passifloraceae
Origin: Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina
Varieties: Panama, Possum Purple, Sweet Sunrise and Quadrangularis
Season: May to October
Damage temp: 30 F

Comments: Passion fruit grow on a fast growing vine that climbs with tendrils. The flowers are large, showy, and extremely aromatic. They are also excellent butterfly attractants. The pulp is used extensively in fruit juice drinks like Hawaiian Punch, and it is often used in baked desserts as well. The Possum Purple fruit typically get to be about the size of a goose egg. The Sweet Sunrise variety is baseball sized and yellow. Both are self pollinating. Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Peach
Botanical name: Prunus persica
Family: Rosaceae
Origin: Asia
Avg. Height X Width: 15’ X 10’
Varieties: Click here for details (PDF)
Season: Spring
Damage temp: 18 F

Comments: Through a breeding program that began in 1953 the University of Florida successfully developed numerous low chill peach varieties suitable to Florida’s mild climate. The varieties we carry will grow and produce fruit even as far south as Miami. In fact, they have fruited successfully in Cuba and Nassau, Bahamas. The fruit quality is equal to that of temperate-zone cultivars, and small commercial plantings can be found throughout central Florida. The trees are deciduous and lose their leaves each winter, but they are highly ornamental otherwise making them an excellent choice for the home garden. Image: © Ian Maguire

Common Persimmon
Botanical name:Diospyros kaki
Family: Ebenaceae
Origin:Southeast Asia
Avg. Height X Width: 15’ X 15’
Varieties: Fuyu and Triumph
Season: Late fall to early winter
Damage temp: 20 F

Comments: Persimmons are deciduous trees that lose their leaves each winter and enter a dormant state. New leaves are then followed by flowers in the spring. The fruit are classified as being astringent or non-astringent. The Fuyu variety is non-astringent while the Triumph is astringent until fully ripe. Both are sweet when ripe and well suited to Florida. They are most commonly eaten fresh out of hand, but they are also common in salads and gelatin desserts.

Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Pineapple
Botanical name: Ananas comosus
Family: Bromeliaceae
Origin: Tropical America
Avg. Height X Width: 3' x 4'
Varieties: Elite
Season: May to September
Damage temp: 27 F

Comments: Pineapples are among the most widely used tropical fruits in the world. The fruit grow on a small herbaceous plant that is in the same family as ornamental bromeliads. The plants can be reproduced by planting the crown of the fruit, but they are best grown from the suckers that occur at the base of the fruit or the mother plant. The plants begin producing fruit at one to two years of age. Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Pitomba
Botanical name: Eugenia luschnathiana
Family: Myrtaceae
Origin: Brazil
Avg. Height X Width: 10' x 10'
Season: May to July
Damage temp: 28 F

Comments: Pitomba are another highly ornamental Eugenia from Brazil. The fruit have an apricot flavor and color. The trees can be container grown, hedged, or grown as a specimen.

Common name: Plum
Botanical name: Prunus salicina
Family: Rosaceae
Avg. Height X Width: 15' x 10'
Varieties: Click here for details (PDF)
Season: Late Spring
Damage temp: 15 F

Comments: The University of Florida’s plum breeding program has successfully developed several Japanese plum varieties suitable for Florida’s mild winters. Like the low chill peaches, the plums were developed as a potential new commercial fruit crop for Florida, but they are an excellent choice for the home landscape as well. They are deciduous trees and go completely dormant in the winter. Flowers and new leaves typically emerge February-March and the fruit ripens May-June. The fruit size is adequate and the fruit quality is excellent. However, the trees have a short lifespan, and usually only survive 5-8 years. Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Pomegranate
Botanical name: Punica granatum
Family: Punicacea
Origin: South Asia
Avg. Height X Width: 10' x 10'
Varieties: Vietnamese Red
Season: Year round
Damage temp: 24 F

Comments: The pomegranate is known as “the hardest working fruit” in the world. The juice contains the highest concentration of naturally occurring antioxidants of any fruit. They are typically baseball to softball size, and are filled with transparent sacs that contain a seed and a flavorful pulp. They can be eaten out of hand or juiced for a drink.Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Raspberry
Botanical name: Robus niveus
Family: Rosaceae
Origin: India
Avg. Height X Width: 10' x 10'
Varieties: Mysore
Season: Year round
Damage temp: 20 F

Comments: Despite originating from the lower Himalayas, the Mysore Raspberry grows and fruits extremely well throughout Florida. The fruit are the size of a nickel, extremely flavorful, and a favorite among kids. The plants do go dormant in the winter, and new canes sprout in the spring.

Image: © Ian Maguire

Common name: Ross Sapote
Botanical name: Pouteria sp.
Family: Sapotaceae
Origin: Central America
Avg. Height X Width: 20' x 15'
Season: September to March
Damage temp: 28 F

Comments: The Ross Sapote is a selection of canistel-like fruit introduced to Florida by Mr. William F. Whitman. It is unclear if it is simply a variety or a distinct species. Like the canistel the plant is evergreen, open and well adapted to sub-tropical climates. The fruit grows more in clusters and is smaller and rounder than the larger selections of canistel. It has an orange-yellow thin skin with a moist flesh that resembles a hard boiled egg yolk. They are commonly eaten fresh out of hand and in ice cream. Even those who are not fond of canistel, immediately like Ross Sapote. Photo by Wm. F. Whitman.

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