Tropical Fruit

If any of you have a passion for growing tropical fruit, then this section should be of great interest to you. Most of these I have grown and many are quite ornamental as well as edible.

Annona cherimola

"Cherimoya" 10 seeds
A native of the Andes, Annona cherimola is quite similar to the custard apple and often considered one of the best-tasting fruits in the world. Seeds are toxic and when crushed can be used as an insecticide so please do not eat the seeds! The small tree capable of being pot grown starts to produce fragrant flowers in 3 to 5 years and will need hand pollinating for fruit. More cool tolerant than the custard apple it prefers winter temperatures of 5C to 15C and summer temperatures of 18C to 25C and dislikes high temperatures and dry atmospheres.

Annona muricata


New for 2021!

Soursop 10 seeds

Annona muricata is another species of the genus Annona or custard apple family which have edible fruit. This fruit is usually called Soursop due to its slightly acidic but sweet taste when ripe. Extracts from the leaves have been used for the treatment of Cancer

Annona squamosa

Custard Apple 10 seeds
Annona squamosa is a small cool tolerant, deciduous tree to 15ft. Custard apples make excellent container specimens even grown from seed when they can come into fruit bearing age after just 2-3 years. The trees produce a small knobbly fruit with soft, creamy white flesh often having a minty or custardy flavour. Often called the sugar apple it is extremely popular throughout the tropics.

Averrhoa carambola

Star Fruit  10 seeds 
Averrhoa carambola is a slow growing tree from Asia. In nature, the trees will reach about 30 feet but much smaller when pot grown and you can expect a 5ft tall tree after 5 years. The pinnate leaves are sensitive and the leaves fold together at night, much like mimosa and we believe also slightly sensitive to touch. The trees produce the well known star fruit, which is an astringent fruit with a sweet and sour flavour. The slow growing nature of these trees makes them an excellent container tree and flowers can be expected in the 3rd to 4th year from seed. In the greenhouse, these plants start flowering in late spring and will have up to 4 flushes of flowers throughout the year. Flowers form in the leaf axils. The variegated white and purple flowers are followed by yellow to golden brown fruits that are up to 5 inches (12.7 cm) long. Carambola needs a rich, moist, slightly acidic soil mix with full sun to partial shade and kept on the dry side over winter while the tree is dormant.

Carica papaya Dwarf Hybrid Collection


Dwarf Papaya Collection 18 seeds

I have had some success growing Papaya Red Maradol in a heated polytunnel but I am still looking for the best variety for our non ideal UK growing conditions. For pot growing they need to be dwarf, fruit early and have some resistance to spider mite and foliage not too large. I offer you a mix of 3 seeds each of 6 dwarf varieties to try out. I am also growing all of these for trials. Red Maradol, Solo Sunrise, Tainung No 1, Linda, Red Nemesis and Red Lady. All of these are self fertile suitable for large pot culture and start fruiting in about 9 months from seed (even earlier in hotter conditions) and when around 1 metre tall.  Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya F1 Red Lady


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Papaya Red Lady is a self pollinating dwarf hybrid with huge crops and one of the most successful commercial varieties. It bears 1kg fruit when only 80cm tall with red, very sweet flesh.  Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya F1 Red Nemesis


New for 2021!

Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Red Nemesis is a new hybrid Papaya similar to Red Lady with deep red flesh. A semi dwarf type with an eventual height around 7 feet but the first fruit sets at 70 cm with a very high yield potential and very aromatic, sweet fruit 1kg to 2kg. It is 50% hermaphrodite / 50% female with a high tolerance to PRSV.
Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya F1 Tainung No. 1


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Papaya Tainung # 1 hybrid is an easy to grow dwarf plant with large 1kg fruit and red fleshed. Has both female and hermaphrodite flowers. A popular variety in the Caribbean. Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya Honeydew


Paw Paw Fruit  20 seeds 

This giant variety of Papaya to 20ft is popular in India and very fast growing, bearing flowers and then fruit within a year of planting. The ripe fruit is usually eaten raw and the unripe green fruit cooked in curries and stews.

Carica papaya Kag Dum


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Kag Dum is an uncommon very dwarf Papaya that is easy to grow in pots and in heat can start fruiting in 8 months from seed but probably more like a year under glass in the UK. The fruit is long with red sweet flesh Excellent for Papaya salads or eaten fresh. Often grown like a Bonsai tree in the tropics in pots.

Carica papaya Linda


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Papaya Linda is a new dwarf hybrid with similar fruit to Solo Sunrise but slightly larger 700gms on dwarf plants. Has both female and hermaphrodite flowers so self pollinating. Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya Red Maradol

Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds
Red Maradol is a dwarf Papaya capable of fruiting within 7 months from seed when only 50cm tall in tropical conditions. A native of Mexico it has pink flesh rather than the normal peach. A good candidate for an autumn sowing in propagator conditions with lighting over winter and greenhouse pot grown to fruiting size the next spring/summer.  This variety had a gender of 66% hermaphrodite and 33% female plants. Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya Solo Sunrise


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Papaya Hawaiian Solo Sunrise is more pink fleshed and smaller fruit to 500gms and the number 1 world production of Papaya again dwarf fruiting at about 1 metre. 66% of plants have both female and male flowers, the fruit is pear shaped, with a small neck at the stem end. Note: These plants will need to be kept between 15C and 30C to grow properly and the flowers will not set or will fall off outside of this temperature range.

Carica papaya Thai Dwarf


Dwarf Papaya 10 seeds

Tropical Golden Dwarf Papaya is a fast growing papaya only reaching 3- 5 feet but bearing fruits as large as 2 lbs in about 12 months from seed given warm conditions. Another great container plant with leaves more yellow than green with bright yellow immature and ripe fruits. Suitable for a heated warm glasshouse with a winter 24 hour temperature above 15c. Papaya have added health benefits as well as the novelty value and contain the digestive enzyme papain that is why it is valuable for aiding digestion. Prevents nausea (includes morning sickness and motion sickness). Also known for its ability to help fight cancer.

Carica papaya Waimanolo

Paw Paw Fruit  10 seeds 
Carica papaya Waimanolo is a plant that I have grown on and off for a number of years but so far I have not managed to get any to fruit. The plants look attractive though with a tall stem topped by a cluster of palmate leaves and it grows easily from seed. The small flowers are scented which I found a bonus when grown as an ornamental pot plant. Please note that this is not a dwarf variety.

Carica pubescens

Mountain Papaya

Carica pubescens is one of the parents of the Babaco hybrid this cool tolerant Papaya will tolerate short spells down to frost level but best grown in warm humid conditions. Like the Babaco it is easier to overwinter than normal Papaya in a heated glasshouse but still not as tough a plant as the Babaco. The fruit is smaller and although it can be eaten raw is best cooked or made into jam. A small branching tree not more than 6ft in pots which will take a few years to achieve even in ideal conditions. (If you are looking for Babaco we sometimes sell a few plants in our plants section)

Carissa Carandas


Kronda Berry 5 seeds

This particular black ball of a fruit is known in English as pickle berry and in India as Kronda or Kranda. The berry and plant parts have been used for over 1000 years in traditional medicine and is a rich source of Iron and Vitamin C (Antioxidants) useful against anticancer activities and anaemia. Another super fruit whose benefits we are missing out on! A tropical bushy small shrub well worth trying as a pot plant in a warm conservatory and the berry turns black when fully ripe.

Carissa macrocarpa


"Natal Plum" 5 seeds

Carissa macrocarpa (Natal Plum), is a spiny shrub native to South Africa, commonly found in the coastal bush of the Eastern Cape and Natal. It produces shiny, deep green leaves and snowy white flowers whose perfumed scent intensifies at night. The ornamental plum it produces are a round, crimson fruit that can be eaten out of hand or made into pies, jams, jellies, and sauces. A traditional food plant in Africa, this little-known fruit has potential to improve nutrition, boost food security, foster rural development and support sustainable landcare. Worth trying as a pot grown plant on a warm conservatory if not for the fruit but for the perfumed flowers.

Cyphomandra betacea

Tree Tomato  10 seeds 
Cyphomandra betacea is a novelty plant from Peru that has good use both for its tomato like edible red fruit (assuming you have space to allow it mature) and large downy leaves making it a bold pot plant for terrace decoration in summer. Makes a sparse shrub with terminal 4” racemes of 1” pink flowers spring to summer. Recently shown on one of the gardening programmes used for large leaved ornamental purposes. Quick growing.  I find that they fruit readily in the second year from seed at about 6ft to 7ft in height if kept under glass and frost free during the winter.

Cyphomandra White Egg


White Tree Tomato  10 seeds 

This Tamarillo bears greenish white fruits but otherwise can be grown in the same way as the normal Red fruited form. Quick growing.

Diospyros kaki

Japanese persimmon or Sharon Fruit  10 seeds 
The most widely cultivated species is Diospyros kaki or Japanese persimmon and cultivars are sold in supermarkets as Sharon fruit. These are sweet, slightly tart fruits with a soft to occasionally fibrous texture. Native to China, it is deciduous, with broad, stiff leaves. Cultivation of the fruit extended first to other parts of east Asia, and was later introduced to southern Europe in the 1800s, and numerous cultivars like 'Hachiya' have been selected. Seed grown plants produce both male and female trees.

Diospyros kaki prefer a good deep loamy soil in sun or light shade disliking very acid or wet and poorly drained conditions. Dormant plants of Diospyros kaki are quite hardy in Britain, tolerating temperatures down to about -14°C but they require warmer summers than are normally experienced in Britain in order to ripen their fruit and wood. The young growth in spring, even on mature plants, is frost-tender and so it is best to grow the plants in a position sheltered from the early morning sun. A warm sunny wall improves the chance of producing ripe fruit and trees fruit freely when grown under glass. Fruits are frequently produced outdoors at Kew but not ripe until November or into December.

Diospyros lotus


The Date Plum  10 seeds  җ җ җ

The Date-Plum Diospyros lotus is native to Southwest Asia and Southeast Europe. It was known to the ancient Greeks as "the fruit of the Gods", but its English name is derived from the small 2cm fruit, which has a taste reminiscent of both plums and dates. Another hardy tree to -20°C. Seed grown plants produce both male and female trees.

Diospyros virginiana

American Persimmon  10 seeds  җ җ җ
The American persimmon, Diospyros virginiana is native to eastern North America.  The small plum like fruits are very astringent and mouth numbing when green, but sweet and edible when ripe after a hard freeze; matures in late autumn. A small to medium sized tree to 60 feet with a round-topped crown of crooked branches and totally frost hardy. The glossy leathery leaves make this tree a good one for landscaping. Seed grown plants produce both male and female trees.

Feijoa sellowiana

Pineapple Guava 15 seeds  җ җ
This interesting small shrub also known as Acca sellowiana will take some frost to perhaps -8°C, therefore fully  hardy in some gardens. In mid summer Feijoa sellowiana bears unusual large dark red flowers and if you grow two plants together, they will cross fertilise to bear delicious “guava” flavoured fruits.

Hibiscus sabdariffa

"The other Cranberry"  10 seeds 
Originally native from India to Malaysia, Hibiscus sabdariffa, also known as ‘Red Sorell’, is now widely distributed and cultivated in tropical and subtropical regions round the globe. The attractive red or purple seed pods are edible and have an invigorating, astringent flavour. In the Caribbean, the calyx-covered fruits are brewed in water to make a refreshing, cranberry-coloured tea. They are also used in salads, jellies (such as Jamaica’s famous rosella jam), sauces, soups, beverages, chutneys, pickles, tarts, puddings, syrups, and wine. Powdered dried red sorrel is added to commercial herb teas such as Red Zinger for flavour and colour.