Strawberry Guavas


Psidium cattleianum (Strawberry guava; cattley guava). Last year, our tree produced fruit in September, but most of the fruit were small (dime- sized) and bitter. This year, we got our first ripe fruit in February and they are larger (quarter-sized) and sweeter, although still with the characteristically tart tang. 


GrandDad says the volume of fruit is greater than it has been in several years. He hypothesizes that the tree is responding favorably to an aggressive pruning at the end of last growing season. 

I've gathered several basketfuls in the past week, and have been reducing the surplus to juice rather than jelly, since I don't feel like bothering with canning the product, and we don't really need any more jelly than we have. I've now got a half gallon of straight strawberry-guava juice in the fridge. I've used a couple of cups of it to pinkify my last batch of lemonade. I think I'm going to cut some of it with commercial fruit juice that's naturally high in sugar, like apple or grape, to mellow out the pine-y edge of the unsweetened cattley. 

Horticultural notes: Native to Brazil, it has become an invasive species in Hawaii and parts of Florida. Unlike the pineapple guava, or feijoia, it is a true guava. 

Running tally for my long-neglected plant-identifying project: (Do you think I'm going to get to 100 by July? Neither do I.)

1. Eschscholzia californica (California poppy)
2. Agapanthus (Lily-of-the-Nile)
3. Meticago sativa (Alfalfa)
4. Fuschia
5. Cosmos
6. Mentha spicata (Spearmint)
7. Ipomoea (Morning glory)
8. Cucurbita pepo (Zucchini, Pumpkin)
9. Psidium cattleianum (Strawberry guava)

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