The science bit
Evergreen tree up to 7m tall. Dark ridges on twigs. Leaves not divided into leaflets (simple) and with entire edges (margins), alternately arranged. Flowers solitary, petals thick and yellow-green, with numerous stamens and superior ovaries. Fruits compound and formed from the numerous superior ovaries, giving them an irregular ovoid shape; skin dark green with curved spines; pulp white containing brown-black seeds.
- This elegant fruit tree, indigenous to South and Central America, has gorgeous aromatic foliage.
- The fruit is often used in juices, ice creams and yoghurt.
- The crushed seeds are used to kill parasites.
- The bark, roots and leaves are used in teas for diabetics and as a sedative.
Where it grows
Native to tropical America, the soursop is tolerant of poor soil and prefers lowland areas at 0–1200m altitude.
- Ovoid: three-dimensionally egg-shaped.
- Stamen: male organ of a flower, including the anther-supporting filament and the pollen-producing anther.
- Superior ovary: floral parts inserted below the ovary (the female part of the flower containing the immature seeds).