Custard Apple

Topics: Fruit, Vitamin C, Custard-apple Pages: 3 (895 words) Published: October 26, 2011
The Custard Apple
The Custard apple’s botanical name is Annona reticulata, also known in English as bullock's heart or bull's heart. In Australia, there are two types of Custard apples grown, the African Pride and the Pinks Mammoth Custard apples are native to South America but Queensland is the world's largest commercial producer. Even so, many Australians are unfamiliar with this tropical fruit and much of the harvest is exported to Asia. It grows on a small deciduous or semi-evergreen tree reaching 10 metres tall. They enjoy a high level of humidity and this can be achieved in a small garden with plenty of summer moisture, especially from overhead sprinklers and heavy mulching with organic material. The season for Custard apple runs from late February to early November with the peak period of production between April to July. Custard Apples are semi-deciduous, shedding most of their leaves by the end of winter. This is the best time to plant them. If there is any danger of frost, plant them out later and then provide frost protection. They have shallow roots and need well-drained soil to grow in. If the soil is too heavy, plant them into a mound. Remove all weeds and grass and mulch heavily, keeping mulch away from the trunk. The unusual looking Custard apple is filled with protein, fibre, minerals, and vitamins and is virtually fat free. With vitamins A and C, magnesium, potassium and vitamins B6 and B3, it is a healthy addition to anyone's diet. One Custard apple provides well over the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C and, with the season spanning March through to October, it provides a valuable source of nutrition almost all year round. Custard apples also have many of the important antioxidants, minerals and vitamins that fight free radicals and help, in particular, to minimise damage to tissues and joints during cardiovascular exercise. Magnesium also has a major role to play in protection against heart diseases. A versatile fruit, the Custard...
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