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Edible portion: Fruit, Seeds - oil

A small deciduous tree. It can grow to 13 m tall. It has drooping branches. There are thorns on the branches. The plant sends up thorny suckers often at a distance from the tree. These need to be cut off. They can be used for rootstock for grafting. The leaves are small and oval. They are 2-5 cm long and bright shiny green. The leaves turn bright yellow before falling. During the growing season, each node of a woody branch produces one to 10 small branches. These fall off later. The flowers are small and 0.5 cm across. They are white to green and produced in large numbers in the angles of leaves. The fruit are round or long and vary from cherry to plum size. They are 2-3 cm long. They have a single hard stone with two seeds. The fruit changes from green to yellow with red spots as it ripens. When fully red and ripe it softens and wrinkles. There are many named varieties.

A subtropical plant. It can stand high temperatures in summer then due to winter dormancy can tolerate very cold temperatures. It only requires a small winter chill to enable it to fruit. They do best in warm sunny positions. They cannot grow in shade. They do best in sandy well drained soils. They can grow in soils with high salinity or alkalinity. It can tolerate drought but fruits best with adequate rainfall. It grows on the Deccan in India. It grows in western Sudan. It suits hardiness zones 7-10. In Sichuan and Yunnan.