Did you know there is a fruit in St. Lucia called Surinam Cherry (Eugenia unifloria)?
Around the world it is known by various names such as Pitanga, Brazilian Cherry or Cayenne Cherry and it belongs to the Myrtaceae family.
The Surinam cherry is native to tropical South America’s east coast ranging from Suriname to southern Brazil and is also found in parts of Paraguay and Uruguay.
It is known as Pitanga throughout Brazil or Ñangapiri in surrounding countries. The plant is relatively pest resistant, easy to grow and high in antioxidants. There are two distinct types: the common bright-red and the rarer dark-crimson to nearly black, which tends to be sweeter and less resinous.
The fruit is high in Vitamin C and is also a source of Vitamin A. The Surinam Cherry tree was introduced to Bermuda for ornamental purposes but is now out of control and listed as an invasive species.
This feature runs every Tuesday and Thursday. It is written by daughter of the soil Anselma Aimable, a former agricultural officer and former correspondent for Caribbean Net News, who has a deep interest in local culture and history. Send ideas and tips to [email protected]