Garcinia mangostana, Mangosteen, fresh seeds
Garcinia mangostana, fresh Mangosteen seeds
Garcinia mangostane belongs to the family of the Clusiaceae. It is native to Indonesia and was introduced in many tropical regions of the world. It is better known as purple mangosteen. Sometimes the plant is called “The Queen of fruits” that is because a legend tells that Queen Victoria was crazy about the fruits of the purple mangosteen. One says that she gave 100 pounds to the people who brought some mangosteen fruits to her. The plant grows as a tree and reaches a height of about 25 m. In culture the tree is kept at a height of about 5m. The purple mangosteen grows very slow. Every part of the purple mangosteen contains yellow latex. The leaves of the purple mangosteen are simple and longish. They get 25 cm long and 10 cm wide. The leaves are glossy and leathery. The venation is clearly visible. The flowers of G. mangostana are diecious meaning that there are female and male flowers on different individuals. Due to that one needs always two plants for reproduction. The actinomorphic flowers are rose to reddish and consist of 4 petals and 4 sepals. The female flowers are a little bigger than the male ones. The fruit resembles a really dark tomato. It is clustered with yellow stripes; this gives the fruit a used look. The sepals are still very good visible at the top of the fruit. The fruit of the purple mangosteen reaches 8 cm in diameter. The pulp is nearly white. It is edible and tastes slightly sour. One fruit includes maximal 5 seeds. The thick pod of the fruit is also edible. However it is quite hard- bitten. Due to the thick pod is quite hard going to open the fruit. The pod is used in the traditional medicine. The natives use it to treat inflammations and appreciate the antibacterial, antioxidativ and antiparasitic effect of the purple mangosteen. Those properties of the purple mangosteen are due to the xanthones which the plant includes. Scientific studies prove that the xanthones are responsible for the healing effects of the mangosteen. However the purple mangosteen is not the miracle fruit like some people think. One should eat the mangosteen in reasonable amounts. Too much can cause a hyperacidity of the blood. There is much ongoing research around the purple mangosteen.
The seeds of the purple mangosteen cannot be stored for long time. They have to be planted immediately into the substrate. The seeds do not need a pretreatment. At a temperature of about 25°C and constantly moist substrate germination occurs after 1 to 2 month. G. mangostana is not winter hardy; it can just recover from very short cold periods.