Common Name: Fruta De Boi
Fruta de boi is a small, deciduous tree with a more or less globose, dense crown; it can grow 4 - 7 metres tall. The twisted bole is more or less cylindrical, around 15 - 25cm in diameter[
The edible fruit is sometimes gathered from the wild for local use, but is not highly esteemed because it only contains a small amount of edible pulp[
S. America - Paraguay, central, eastern and northern Brazil, Bolivia.
Savannah and woodland savannah, most commonly on gentle slopes where the soil is clayey and fertile[
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Prefers a sunny position[
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
Plants are quite slow growing[
A dioecious species, both male and female forms need to be grown if fruit and seed are required.
Fruit - raw[
]. A thin, mucilaginous pulp with a sweet, pleasant flavour[
]. The fruits contain only a small amount of edible pulp, surrounding 6 - 8 seeds[
]. The yellowish-green, globose fruits can be around 6cm in diameter[
The wood is medium-textured, cross-grained, moderately heavy, soft, not durable[
]. Because of its small dimensions, it is only used locally for things such as rustic constructions, tool handles and oxen yokes[
The wood is used for fuel and to make charcoal[
Seed - it has a very short viability and so should be sown as soon as possible[
]. The flesh should be removed since this contains germination inhibitors[
]. Sow the seed in a shady position in a nursery seedbed. The sowing media for ebony uses soil and fine sand at the ratio 3:1. The seed is planted horizontally or vertically with
the radicle end down, with a sowing depth of 1 - 1Â½ times the thickness of seed. Distance between the seeds is 3 - 5cm. Seeds are very sensitive to desiccation during germination and early growth, so must be regularly watered at this time[
]. Normally the seed will germinate after one week. In one trial, fresh seed, sown one day after collection, showed 85% germination rate within 17 - 65 days[
As a rule fresh seeds have a high percentage of fertility. The seedlings develop long taproots at an early stage, often before any appreciable elongation of the shoot takes place. The growth of the seedling is decidedly slow [
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