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Monday, 16 September 2013

Fijian longan or Island lychee (Pometia pinnata)

Fijian longan or Island lychee (Pometia pinnata) is a kind of tropical fruit come front South East Asia and Pacific Islands as their origin habitat. Now Pamotia Pinnata grows concentrated in Papua Island and has it local name Matoa. This tree product a sweet and nice fruit named the same with its tree Fijian Logan or Matoa.

The taste of this fruit is combination between Lychee and Durian, two kinds of fruits that is the favorite in South East Asia regions. Even though has its very nice taste, so far this fruit is not yet popular outside the area of grown. Even in Indonesia, where Matoa grow, many people are not familiar. So far, this fruit tree is not yet widely cultivated and is still a forest crop. The reason may be the reason why Matoa not well known, even in their growing area. Once again, this fruit has a unique flavor, fresh sweet and deliciously scented.

Characteristic of the tree:

Matoa (Pometia pinnata) is a typical fruit tree of Papua, relatively large trees with an average height of 18 meters with an average maximum diameter of 100 cm. Generally fruiting once a year. Flowering in July to October and fruiting 3 or 4 months later.

Matoa fruit spread in Papua are in almost all regions of the plains to a height of ± 1200 m ASL. It grows well in areas that dry soil conditions (not flooded) with a thick layer of soil. Climate needed for good growth is climate with high rainfall (> 1200 mm / year).

This plant is easy to adapt to hot or cold conditions. This tree is also resistant to insects, which generally spoil the fruit. The wood is rather hard to be made for building materials such as windows, doors, flooring and others. Seedling propagation of plants through seeds. Plants started to bear fruit at the age of 7-8 years after planting.

Taproot. The leaves are large, the form are round to elongated round , leaves bones protruding down, flat edge. Stems up to 1 m. Leafy compound, leaves are arranged alternate, , 4-12 pairs of leaflets. When young leaves are bright red, having grown into a green, oblong shape, length 30-40 cm, width of 8-15 cm. 

Compound flower and grows from the stalk tip, the form of flower is funnel. Round flower stalk, short, green, with petal-haired, green color. The stamens are short but the amount is a lots, white color. White-stalk, rounded base, white with a crown composed 3-4 strands of ribbon-shaped, yellow.

The Fruit:

Round or oval fruit along 5-6 cm, the outer skin is smooth the color when the fruit ripe are yellowish green, yellow or red to black (depending on variety). Meat mushy fruit, white to yellowish, with a thickness varying from thin to thick. Round seed shape, light brown to blackish.

Sweet fruit flavors with aromas of fruit such as durian, the fruit has a lot of water, similar to litchi fruit. Clustered fruit in the fruit stalk. Each stem of the fruit contains 23-76 pieces weighing between 0,5 - 1,0 kg. Island lychee fruit rich with vitamin C and vitamin E, those nutrients serves among other as an antioxidant.

Scientific classification:
  • Kingdom: Plantae (plants)
  • Subkingdom: Tracheobionta (vascular)
  • Super Division: Spermatophyta (produce seed)
  • Division: Magnoliophyta (flowering)
  • Class: Magnoliopsida (dashed two / dicots
  • Sub-class: Rosidae
  • Order: Sapindales
  • Family: Sapindaceae
  • Genus: Pometia
  • Species: Pometia pinnata, Pometia acuminata and Pometia coreaceae.