Proudly South African Fruits – Marula Fruit – Volume 1 – (Article 1 of 8)

Proudly South African Fruits – Marula Fruit – Volume 1 – (Article 1 of 8)

by Dr. Marli Botha

According to the Department: Agriculture, Forestries and Fisheries (DAFF), these are considered the most important South African indigenous fruit crops: Marula, mobola plum, red milkwood fruit, wild medlar, kei apple, monkey orange, sour fig and sour plum. Today’s Hero is the Marula Fruit.

Below are a few facts for the Marula fruit:

1. Sclerocarya birrea, commonly known as the marula, is a medium-sized deciduous fruit-bearing tree, indigenous to the woodlands of Southern Africa, the Sudano-Sahelian range of West Africa, the savanna woodlands of East Africa and Madagascar.

2. Marula oil can be applied to moisturise the skin, and is used as an edible oil by the San people in Southern Africa.

3. The marula fruit is eaten by various animals. Giraffes, rhinos and elephants all eat from the marula tree, with elephants in particular, they consume the bark, branches and fruits of the marula.

4. The Marula fruit is very juicy and is eaten fresh, or cooked to produce jellies, juices or alcoholic beverages. Amarula being the favourite.

5. Marula trees are dioecious, which means they have a specific gender.

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