Botanical Name: Malpighia emarginata
Common Name: Barbados cherry/ Acerola/ West Indian cherry
With its wavy evergreen leaves & spoon-shaped fringed lavender petals, the bright ‘Barbados Cherry tree’ is an interesting example of a fruit that rose, like Cinderella! Being a member of the Malpighiaceae family, it’s a large, bushy shrub. The plant is native to West Indies, Central and South America and has been spread beyond its natural range to Tropical & Sub-tropical regions Jamaica, Puerto Rico & Florida. During WW-II the Barbados cherry was identified as an excellent source of vitamin-C (% daily value: 2976/ 100 gm.)
Accentuated by bright evergreen leaves and pink flowers, the Barbados cherries are highly adaptive. Their electric-red fruits, borne singly are round and lobed, cherry-like, with thin, glossy skin. They are free from saturated fat, cholesterol, low in sodium and a good source of vitamin-A (15%). Studies done by the University of Puerto Rico's School of Medicine revealed the ability of this species to help fight colds and its high content of ascorbic acid that is embedded with balmy healing properties. Whether grown among other fruit trees in your garden, or in a container on the patio, you can still harvest sizeable amounts of delicious cherries each growing season.
Barbados cherry trees are fast growing and flourish well in adequate sized pots that enhances root development. Glazed pots will consume less water than earthen terracotta pots due to their porosity. A mixture of soil, sand and perlite is highly recommended. Bright & sunny window location with a more southern exposure is best for growth and fruit production. Moderately soak the pot with water and foliage watering may be done once a week. Shall we mesmerize you with this ‘reddish wonder’…safely guarded in our nursery pots!!?