Cyphomandra betacea tree tomato "Tamarillo" (Solanum betacea) red
Cyphomandra betaceae Tamarillo Tree Tomato seeds, RED COLOR
Cyphomandra betacea is a semi-woody plant also known as Tree tomato, Tomatillo, cape tomato and Tamarillo. The plant synonyms include solanum crassifolium, Cyphomandra betacea, Pionandra betacea, Cyphomandra crassifolia, Solanum betacea and Solanum insigne. Tamatillo belongs to a nightshade family of Solanaceae. Cyphomandra betacea has its origin in the forest of Andes in Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia and Chile and it is one of the most popular fruits in the regions.
Cyphomandra betacea is a small tree and can grow up to 3-5 metres high. It is weaponless, covered with soft short hairs. Its trunk has strong and thick lateral branches and the bark is greyish in color. It has leaves alternating at opposite each other, simple, entire and usually clustered at branch tips. It has a strong and healthy petiole of about 4-8 cm long. The branches are large about 15-30 by 10-20 cm, ovoid with a heart-shaped base. Young leaves are covered with soft hairs on both sides and the upper part becomes smooth as it ages. Flowers are pinkish very fleshy and occur in groups of 3-10. They have a pleasant scent and the flower cluster is 13-15 mm in diameter. The fruits are ovate berry like about 4-6 cm long and 3-5 cm wide. They hang at the tip of the stalk and the skin is thin, smooth, reddish-brown when immature to orange-red when ripen. The fruits contain numerous small seeds, rounded, flat and hard. The soils should also have a pH that’s either neutral or slightly acidic.
Cyphomandra betacea can be useful in various ways, for instance, fruits can be eaten raw or cooked. It has distinct flavors depending on the tree but the most desirable ones are juicy and sub-acid and can be eaten out of hand or added to salads. The plant can also be useful preservative to jellies and jams. The fruit is also rich in vitamin A, C, E and iron.