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Red Mombin, Spanish Plum
Scientific Name: Spondias purpurea L.
Family: Anacardiaceae
Red Mombin, Spanish Plum (Spondias  purpurea) Sun Exposure:

Origin: Nicaragua to Ecuador

Growth Habits: Tree to 25 feet tall (7.5 m)

Watering Needs:


The Red Mombin, a deciduous tree of tropical America, is commonly planted in Mexico and Central America and is often seenthroughout the West Indies. The trees, which seldom exceed 25 feet in height, are characterized by the stout trunk and stiff branches. The pinnate leaves are 6 to 9 inches long (15 to 22 cm) with 17 or more thin, obliquely oblong-elliptic leaflets 0.5 to 1.5 inches in length (1.2 to 3.5 cm).
In Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, the yellow variety Spondias purpurea var. lutea Hort. (S. cirouella Tussac), is more commonly planted than the red mombin. This variety is known locally as 'Ciruela.' It differs from the red mombin in having obovate, smooth, yellow fruits that ripen from August to October. It is a larger tree with larger leaflets. The yellowish flowers are borne while the tree is dormant. The flavor is identical with that of the red mombin.

Blooming Habits:
The reddish flowers are produced on short growths from wood of the previous season.

Fruiting Habits:
The deep red fruits, which ripen in early summer, are borne singly, or 2 or 3 together. They vary in shape and size but usually are oval in outline, 1 to 2 inches in length, and have a somewhat irregular surface. A layer of very juicy, subacid, aromatic pulp surrounds the rather large, slightly rough seed. The fruit is usually eaten fresh and is of higher quality than most other species of Spondias.

Propagation is by seeds or by setting large woody cuttings in the desired location. Fenceposts cut from the red mombin tree usually continue to grow.

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Desert-Tropicals is dedicated to provide gardening advice, gardening ideas, and information about flower of all kind for landscape and collections. We try to check carefully the identification of the plants on the illustrations as well as the other information from the page, but occasionally errors do occur. if you notice anything that needs to be changed please contact us. Thanks.

1998-2005 Philippe Faucon, All Rights Reserved.