Rose Apple Growing (Wax Apple) Guide:
Introduction to Rose Apple Growing:- Well, did you ever heard of rose apple fruit? Rose apple is a tropical and sub-tropical fruit mainly grown in southeast Asia. This fruit is very crispy and tasty can be cultivated very easily even in poor soils. Rose apple or Rosewater apple is popularly known as “Jambu” or “Wax apple”. The taste of this fruit is similar to an apple. However, the flesh of the rose apple is softer than the apple and it has an excellent rose aroma. These fruits are unique in shape and available mostly in pink colors. When it comes to the rose apple tree description, the general height is about 20 to 24 feet or even more. Usually, this tree leaves are 7 to 8 inch in length and 2 inches in width. Most of the gardeners show the interest to grow in the backyard or even in big containers. You can also get bonsai apple rose trees for indoor /backyard/pot growing purpose. Rose apple fruits can be eaten as raw or used in salads. These fruits have a crisp and slightly sour taste, because of this fact they are very well fit into jams, jellies, wines, and pickles. Apart from the fruit, the rose apple tree bark is often used in herbal medicines and its wood is used to make tools. Kerala and Tamil Nadu are states where these fruits are well grown. This fruit has an excellent future due to its health benefits, uses and easy growing methods. The best advantages of this tree are, once its orchard is established, it can fetch you fruits for 30 to 35 years. These fruits are highly perishable and should be consumed as soon as they ripen fully. Commercial cultivation will fetch good profits under ideal orchard management practices and marketing practices.
Scientific Name or Botanical Name of Rose Apple:- Syzygium samarangense / Syzygium jambos.
Family Name of Rose Apple:- Myrtaceae.
Genus of Rose Apple:- Syzygium.
Common names of Rose Apple:- The following are the common names of this fruit.
- Malabar Plum
- Bell Fruit
- Java Apple
- Chom pu
- Pomme Rosa
- Pomme Rose
- Pommier Rose
- Poma Rosa
- Manzana Rosa
- Manzanita de Rosa
- Bodhi Tree
- Wax Apple
- Wax Jambu
Health Benefits of Rose Apples:-The following are some of the health benefits of Rose Apples.
- Rose apples are a good source of nutrients such as protein, vitamin ‘A’, vitamin ‘C’, fiber, calcium, iron. Its high fiber content helps to prevent constipation and helps digestion
- Consuming rose apple juice regularly may be useful in detoxifying the liver and kidney
- The alkaloid compound found in the rose apple tree bark can help in controlling diabetes
- This fruit antioxidants and high potassium are good for cardiovascular health may prevent heart disease and stroke
- Rose apple may boost immune system since it has a good source of vitamin ‘C’
- This vitamin ‘C’ rich fruit may also prevent tamers and a certain type of cancers.
Note: Avoid excess eating of this fruit it has some side effects.
Varieties (Cultivars) of Rose Apples:- Black Pearls and Green Pearls are two rose apple categories grown southeast Asia. The cultivars include under these categories are;
- Big Fruit
- Thub Thim Chan
- Indonesian Big Fruit
- Beg Red
- Vietnam White
Note: Out of these varieties, ‘Pink and Big Fruit’ occupies 80% of cultivation. There are other varieties grown in different parts of the world, check with your horticulture department for a high yielding commercial hybrid variety of rose apple suitable for your region.
Climate Requirement for Rose Apple Growing:- The rose apple belongs to tropical fruit tree species and it thrives well at the temperature range of 25 to 32°C. Cool temperatures enhance total soluble solids (TSS) and skin anthocyanin accumulation in rose apple fruits. For better growth of the tree, higher yields and quality produce, this crop requires a high water supply. Soil should be maintained with constant moisture by avoiding any water stress for successful rose apple growing.
Soil Requirement for Rose Apple Growing:- The best suitable soils for growing rose apples ranges from mild acid to mild alkaline, and sandy to clayey. Rose apples grown in coastal areas with mild alkaline and clayey soils will result in quality fruits. Commercial growers of rose apples should consider for soil test though these trees can survive in poor soils.
Propagation in Rose Apple Growing:- Propagation of rose apple trees can be done by seed or saplings. Major propagation is carried out by cuttings and air layering.
Land Preparation, Planting, and Spacing in Rose Apple Growing:- Land should be prepared well enough to remove any weeds and other materials like rocks and appropriate pits should be dug for rose apple growing. When it comes to plant and row distance, the ideal row-to-row distance is 7 meter to 8 meters and 5 meters to 6 meters is for plant-to-plant. This will accommodate about 250 to 325 trees per 1-hectare field.
Irrigation in Rose Apple Growing:- Rose apple trees require abundant water supply throughout their growth period. This crop needs constant moisture levels in the soil. Avoid any water stress especially during its growth. Drip irrigation is the best option for growing rose apples. Tree basins should be covered with any mulch material for persevering the soil moisture. If you use any natural mulch material like straw or any kind of dry leaves for mulching, they can work out as organic compost in the long run which can result in good growth of the tree. Frequency of irrigation in rose apple growing depends on soil moisture holding capacity and climate. However, you should make sure constant moisture in the soil by avoiding any water stress. It requires immediate irrigation after transplanting in the field. Avoid any water stagnation at plant basins for a long time.
Manures and Fertilizers in Rose Apple Growing:- Usually, rose apple crop over 7 years of age requires 1,300 to 1,600 grams of nitrogen (N), P2O5, K2O each. Urea of 2.5 to 3.5 kg/plant/year along with 15 to 20 tonnes/ha of organic matter (well-decomposed farmyard manure) should be applied. A basal dose of fertilizer should be applied by digging, and supplemental doses of fertilizers should be applied by soil drenching, spraying on tree leaves or broadcasting on the soil surface before irrigating the trees. In the case of sandy soils, this crop requires a lesser quantity of fertilizers with more frequent applications and in case of clayey soils, this crop requires lesser chemical fertilizers.
Intercultural Operations in Rose Apple Growing:- The following activities should be carried out as part of an intercultural operation in the orchard.
- Weed Control: Shallow cultivation should be given to control weeds between rows and hand weed can be applied at the plant base. Mulching also can be practiced to control weeds at the tree base and prevent moisture loss. This can also protect from soil erosion.
- Pruning: Rose apple tree can reach a height of 12 to 15 meters. However, for establishing a better framework, the height of the tree should be adjusted to 4 to 5 meters height through the pruning process. Annual renewal pruning should be done after harvesting or before production period to make the desired tree height. The successful pruning depends on production period adjustment of the orchard, soil type and season.
Inter-crops in Rose Apple Growing:- Commercial growers of apple rose crop can earn additional income by cultivation inter-crops during initial years of rose apple plantation. Can grow any vegetable or herbs during this period.
Pests and Diseases in Rose Apple Growing:- Controlling pests and diseases is essential in any fruit orchard.
The rose apple tree has very few serious diseases and insect problems. However, Root rot and mushroom root rot can attack the crop. For symptoms and control measures of any pests and diseases in rose apple growing, you should contact your nearest department of horticulture. To prevent the rose apple fruits from an insect bite and sunburn, bagging the fruits with paper bags has been practiced by many farmers.
Harvesting in Rose Apple Growing:- Rose apple trees start bearing fruits 3 to 5 years after planting depending on the variety or about 2 years after top grafting. Hand picking is preferred during harvesting. As these fruits are highly perishable, one should not keep on the tree for a long time after ripening starts.
Post-Harvesting and Marketing in Rose Apple Growing:- Taking care of rose apples is very important as they are highly perishable. After the harvesting of fruits, they should be kept in cloth bags and store in a cool place. Grading should be done based on size and flesh color before transporting to market. Pre-cooling of rose apple fruits after harvesting should be done to bring down the temperature of fruits. This can greatly help in extending its shelf life. Usually, the temperature of 10 to 12°C is required for pre-cooling. However, in the case of the export market, pre-cooling at 0 to 5°C should be done for one day and subsequently at 10°C.
Yield in Rose Apple Growing:- Yield of rose apples depends on the selected variety, soil type, irrigation, and climatic conditions along with proper orchard management practices. In general, rose apple trees could be grown for fruit production for more than 30 years. One can expect on an average 600 to 700 fruits from one matured heavy bearing tree.