Guava

Guava

Psidium guajava or Guava is a tropical fruit tree whose fruit is also called guava.

Native to Central America and northern South America, it is now grown throughout tropical and subtropical regions due to its ability to grow on very diverse soils and in a variety of climates. These same qualities make it an envasive species.

It is increasingly grown as a bonsai.

Description:

It is a shrub or small tree that usually reaches 10 m high, sometimes 20 m. The root system is shallow. The trunk is smooth, pale red-brown. The bark peels off in large patches, exposing a greenish sublayer. It usually reaches a diameter of 25 cm but can reach 60 cm in diameter.

Young branches are 4-angled and pubescent.

The leaves are opposite, ovate to elliptic, pointed, pubescent at the underside, often fragile, with pronounced ribs and a peduncle of 1-2 cm long. They measure 7-15 cm long and 3-5cm wide.

The flowers are white, hermaphrodite, solitary or 2-4, located in the leaf axils. They measure about 2.5 cm in diameter.

The fruit appears after 3-4 years. They are globose to ovoid or pear-shaped, yellow-white to pale pink and measure 2.5-10 cm long. The pulp is white to pink, sweet and sour and contains many seeds (100-500 per fruit). Its texture is slightly grainy.

Flowering and fruiting occur throughout the year.

Uses:

The edible fruit is rich in vitamin A and C. It is eaten raw or cooked. It can be used as a source of pectin when it is green or source of ascorbic acid when too small or overripe.

The wood is used for carpentry, firewood or the production of charcoal.

The bark is used for tanning hides. The leaves yield a black dye.

It is also used in traditional medicine to treat diarrhea, upset stomach, dizziness or regulate menses.

Psidium guajava flower

Psidium guajava flower

Nomenclature:

Common names:

Apple guava, guava

Synonyms:

Guaiava pyriformis, Guajava pyrifera, Guajava pyrifera var. pomifera, Myrtus guajava, Myrtus guajava var. pyrifera, Psidium angustifolium, Psidium aromaticum, Psidium cujavillus, Psidium cujavus, Psidium fragrans, Psidium guajava var. cujavillum, Psidium guajava var. minor, Psidium guajava var. pumilum, Psidium guava, Psidium guayava, Psidium igatemyensis, Psidium pomiferum, Psidium pumilum, Psidium pumilum var. guadalupense, Psidium pumilum var. intermedium, Psidium pyriferum, Psidium sapidissimum, Psidium vulgare

Etymology:

Psidium: from the Latin psidium,, itself derived from the Greek sidion (side)
Guajava: vanfrom the Tupi name guajava

Origin:

Central America, northern South America

Habitat:

Tolerates both dry and wet climates and any type of soil. It is even slightly resistant to salinity. But it grows best with an average rainfall and in a well-drained soil. Is generally found between 0-2,470 m altitude.



Hardiness:

USDA zones 9-10-11
Guava withstands very short frosts (up to -5 ° C) but suffers damage (leaf loss)

Psidium guajava treeCare:

Exposure:

Prefers full sun but tolerates partial shade

Soil:

Any substrate, preferably well drained.

Water:

Ideally, water thoroughly in summer, less in the winter. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Though guava resists drought as well as sodden soil.

Fertilizer:

Withstands poor soils but prefers monthly universal liquid fertilizer

Snoei:

Does not require pruning, unless you want to limit its height.

Propagation:

By seed, cutting or air layering.

Cuttings and layering gives you plants with the same features as the parent plant. Fruiting starts faster after cutting or layering compared to propagation by seed. And the crop will be bigger.

Sowing instructions:

  • seeds keep their viability about 1 year
  • sow in moist and sterile substrate, at 1,5 cm deep
  • 20-30 °C
  • germination time: 4-12 weeks
  • flowering will occur after 3-4 jaar
  • seedlings grow slowly at the beginning, growth speeds up with time

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