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Annona squamosa

Description from Flora of China

Trees, deciduous, to 8 m tall. Bark thin. Branchlets pubescent, glabrescent. Petiole 4-15 mm; leaf blade elliptic-lanceolate, narrowly elliptic, or oblong, 5-17.5 × 2-7.5 cm, thinly papery to membranous, abaxially pale green and puberulent when young but glabrate in age, base obtuse to rounded and slightly decurrent, apex acute to obtuse, lateral veins 8-15 on each side of midvein, adaxially flat. Inflorescences 1-flowered or 2-4-fasciculate. Flowers 2-3 cm, puberulent. Sepals triangular. Outer petals basally green to purple, oblong-lanceolate, 1.5-3 × 0.5-0.8 cm, fleshy, thick, inside concave, keeled on apical half; inner petals absent or reduced to scales, as long as stamens. Stamens oblong, ca. 1 mm; connective broad, apex subtruncate. Carpels oblong, distinct at anthesis; stigmas ovate-lanceolate. Syncarp greenish yellow, slightly pruinose, spherical to ovoid, 5-10 cm in diam., areoles rounded, convex, separated by deep grooves; pulp white. Seeds black-brown, ca. 14 mm. Fl. May-Jul, fr. Jun-Nov.

The fruit, sugar-apple or sweetsop, is edible. It contains more than 20% sugar, 2.3% protein, and 0.3% fat. The bast fiber is used for paper making; the roots are used medicinally for dysentery; and the seeds yield up to 20% oil.

Widely cultivated; near sea level to 200 m. Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Taiwan, Yunnan, Zhejiang [native to tropical America].


 

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