Tuesday, September 19, 2006

MANGOSTEEN (Garcinia Mangostana)

MANGOSTEEN (Garcinia Mangostana)

The mangosteen, known as the queen of tropical fruits, is native to Malaysia and has great potential of commercialisation and export. The mature tree is 10 – 25 meter tall and is one of the slowest growing trees. While seedling may fruits within 6 – 8 years, such fruiting may not happen until the 15th to 20th year if it is grown under suboptimal conditions. The recommended planting distance is 10 meters x 10 meters, and it is advisable to intercrop with short term crops.

An average yield is 200 – 500 fruits per tree per season but in a good season, yields may reach 2,000 fruits. The color of the fruit changes from green to greenish purple and finally to dark purple when it is ripe. The fruits are usually harvested singly with a bamboo pole, one end of which is split and widened to form nest-like structure. This enables each fruit to be securely placed in the nest preventing it from falling to the ground and being damage.

How to Eat

The mangosteenhas a thick outer rind but a soft flesh when it is ripe. The ripe mangosteen can be opened by pressing the fruit with both hands until the skin cracks. The skin is then easy to open and contents can be eaten fresh. It can also be made into jam.

Other way to easy open the mangosteen skin, use a sharp knife. Cut around the skin and then just open it. It’s easier than pressing by hands and the flesh also look better.

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