Food Plants International - Plant Fact Sheets Nephelium lappaceum - Rambutan
Edible Portion: Fruit, Seeds
A medium sized tree up to 12-25 m high. It keeps its leaves throughout the year. Trees spread to 6 m wide. The leaves are alternate with leaflets opposite along the stalk. There are 5-7 pairs of leaflets. Each leaflet can be 20 cm long by 8 cm wide. The leaflet stalks are short and the leaflets are pointed at the tip and rounded at the base. The flowers are very numerous on compound flower arrangements. Seedling trees can produce only female or only male trees. Some kinds have both male and female flowers or both flower parts in the one flower. The fruit are dark red with many prominent projections united at the base.The colour can vary between yellow, green, orange and bright red. Sometimes trees are separately male and female and sometimes seedless fruit is set. Often male and female flowers are separate but on the same tree. The fruit hang in loose clusters of 10-12 and are up to 5 cm long. Normally each fruit contains one large seed. There are several named cultivated varieties.