There are two forms of santol fruit, the red and the yellow. Both have large, round, textured yellow fruit with a very thick velvety skin. The divided fruit segments can be consumed raw or eaten with spices. The flesh is usually sucked off the seeds as the pulp clings firmly to them. The fruits ripen in late summer in South Florida, typically August through mid to late September.
The tree itself is very elegant in appearance with large lime-green leaves; new growth is a handsome bronzy red color. In its native setting it is a large tree that will buttress with age, with low growing branches; it makes an excellent street or shade tree. 40' high and 30' wide is a standard mature landscape size.
The santol grows well in Florida in acid sandy soil and oolitic limestone, but in the latter the foliage becomes chlorotic, so be prepared to fertilize trees if they exhibit nutrient deficiency. Full sun is best for maximum fruit production.
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