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Bilimbi, Cucumber Tree, Pickle Fruit
Scientific Name: Averrhoa bilimbi L.
Synonym:
Family: Oxalidaceae
Bilimbi, Cucumber Tree, Pickle Fruit (Averrhoa  bilimbi) Recommended Temperature Zone:
USDA: 11-12

Frost Tolerance: Hardy to 32F (0C) for short periods

Sun Exposure: Full sun to light shade.

Origin: Indonesia

Growth Habits: Evergreen tree, 30 feet tall (9 m) or more

Watering Needs: Regular water

Propagation: Seeds, layering


The Bilimbi is native to the Moluccas (Indonesia) but is now cultivated in many other places in the Tropics. It forms a medium- sized to large tree that may reach a height of 60 feet, but more commonly is 20 to 30 feet. The odd-pinnately compound leaves are large, containing up to 45 leaflets. The oblong-pointed leaflets are 2 to 4 inches in length and have short petioles.
The Bilimbi is more cold sensitive than the Carambola.

Blooming Habits:
The dark-red flowers are produced in panicles from the trunk and older branches.

Fruiting Habits:
The mature fruits resemble small cucumbers and usually range from 2 to 3 inches in length. They have a smooth thin, green rind sometimes faintly five-angled, and an acid pulp in which are imbedded several small seeds. As with the carambola, there is a sweet form of the bilimbi, which lacks the acid taste. Fruits of the bilimbi are candied or cooked with sugar as a preserve. The pulp also is used to make a refreshing drink.

Propagation:
The bilimbi is usually propagated by seeds but improved form may be marcotted.


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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.

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