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Tree Description: The trees go dormant in the winter and drop all of their leaves. As spring begins to break, the trees begin to flower, and the fruit follows in 45-60 days. The fruit and flower of the hog plum occur right on the branches as opposed to hanging from the tips. They are usually eaten as fresh fruit or pickled green and eaten in East Indian cooking. Avg. Height x Width: 15' x 15'. Varieties: Red and Yellow. Season: May to July. Damage Temp: 27F.

Scientific Name: Spondias purpurea

Common Name: Mombin

Family: Anacardiaceae

Relatives: mango, pistasheo, cashew

Origin: Central America

Distribution/History: The tree is native and common in moist lowland forests from southern Mexico to Peru and Brazil, and in many of the West Indies. It has been planted in Bermuda; is grown to a limited extent in India and Indonesia; is rare in Malaya, but widely cultivated and naturalized in tropical Africa.The United States Department of Agriculture received seeds from Colombia in 1914; more seeds arrived in 1917; and Dr. David Fairchild collected seeds in Panama in 1921. Still, only a few specimens exist in special collections in southern Florida.

Importance: The fruit juice is drunk as a diuretic and febrifuge. The decoction of the astringent bark serves as an emetic, a remedy for diarrhea, dysentery, hemorrhoids and a treatment for gonorrhea and leucorrhea; and, in Mexico,believed to expel calcifications from the bladder. The powdered bark is applied on wounds. A tea of the flowers and leaves is taken to relieve stomachache, biliousness, urethritis, cystitis and eye and throat inflammation. In Belize, a decoction of the young leaves is a remedy for diarrhea and dysentery. The juice of crushed leaves and the powder of dried leaves are used as poultices on wounds and inflammations. The gum is employed as an expectorant and to expel tapeworms.