Strawberry guava tree is a beautiful, fruit-bearing shrub that is native to South America, especially Brazil. The plant is closely related to the common guava and is an excellent candidate for growing fruit in your garden. Strawberry guava has something of everything as a landscape plant:
- Deeply colored foliage
- Nice shape
- Dark, patterned bark
- Sweet tasting fruits
It bears the scientific name Strawberry Guava (Psidium cattleianum). The plant is easy to maintain and grow. The tree, also known as Cattley guava, has a flat root system and is therefore ideal as attractive discounts near your home. Because it is native to Brazil, it grows best in a tropical climate.
Its delicate white flowers and fresh fruits make strawberry guavas an architectural accent. If you want to lure colorful wildlife into your garden, consider growing Cattley guavas. The fruits can be enjoyed not only by children and guests, but also by squirrels and birds as a sweet feast. Caring for a red strawberry guava tree is a rewarding experience. Here's a quick guide on how to grow it in your garden.
The cattley guava in a botanical garden in Hawaii. Source: Starr Environmental
|Common Name (s)||Strawberry guava, cattley guava, cherry guava|
|Scientific name||Psidium cattleianum|
|Days to harvest||The fruit ripens in 90-150 days|
|ground||Rich, sandy loam with pH 5-7|
|fertilizer||3 times a year in spring, summer, autumn|
|pests||Black scale, ants, fruit flies, root knot nematode|
|Diseases||Algal leaf spot|
Strawberry guava tree has a flat root system that produces white flowers in spring. Tufts of berries that ripen in summer follow the beautiful flowers. As soon as these berries have a cherry red color, they are ready to be eaten. The fruit tastes of a sweet and sour strawberry.
The tree or shrub is very adaptable and can be grown outdoors. Even though the strawberry guava tree usually prefers a warmer climate, it is quite hardy at temperatures down to -5 ° C.
As an evergreen shrub, red strawberry guava tree can reach 15-20 feet in height, but ideally should be pruned to 12 feet in height because the root system is relatively flat and weak. If the Cattley guava tree gets too high, it can easily tip over due to strong wind.
Strawberry guava varieties
The strawberry guava tree belongs to the Myrtaceae family. Although there are no known varieties, the plant has closely related shrubs from the same family. One such bush is Psidium Guajava, also known as Common Guava or Lemon Guava. This shrub bears juicy fruit and grows to 10-15 feet tall.
The plant is sensitive to frost and comes from the Caribbean, South America and Central America. The bush grows at the same height as the strawberry guava, but is not as wide. It is also not as hardy as the strawberry guava plants.
Apart from strawberry guava, the other closely related species is pineapple guava or feijoa sellowiana. This has smaller and juicier acidic fruits. They grow wider than tropical guavas and a little shorter than 12 feet in height. However, the shrub quickly brings high yield in a short time. Pineapple guavas are known for their frost tolerance and are quite hardy at low temperatures.
All varieties need plenty of water, sunshine and rich, well-drained soil to grow well.
Planting strawberry guava
Here's a quick introduction on how to plant strawberry guava and what to expect in the weeks after planting.
Availability of seeds
Strawberry guava tree spreads through shoots and seeds – the latter are often the work of birds. You can find the yellow seeds in nurseries or in online seed companies. Rest assured, strawberry guava seeds are readily available.
To ensure that the seeds germinate in time, plant them in moist, sterile soil with a warm temperature of 21-29 ° C. The estimated germination time is 4-6 weeks and, depending on soil quality and temperature resistance, can also take up to 12 weeks.
When to plant
Spring is the perfect time to plant a strawberry guava tree. The soil is more workable, there are high chances of rain and most of the time the sun is outside.
Where to plant
Strawberry guava usually needs a tropical habitat that is similar to that of Brazil. They can be planted in your garden, outside your home or as a small tree in your garden. However, the plants are invasive species. Avoid planting in areas that you do not want to take over!
How to plant
Because germinating guava seeds can be a bit difficult, keep the soil and temperature constant. Plant the seeds ¼-½ inches deep in fertile, loamy soil. Soil temperature should remain between 70-85 ° F to ensure successful germination.
Strawberry Guava Tree Landscaping
Strawberry guava is ideal for edible landscaping. Both the fruits and the plants can be used as an architectural accent, single courtyard pattern or even as protective plants. The foliage is so versatile and attractive that it can be used as a background for smaller, more sensitive plants and looks beautifully planted along a driveway. If you have a terrace or porch, decorate the empty rooms with strawberry guavas.
Strawberry guava plant care
A Psidium cattleianum producing green fruits. Source: homeredwardprice
The plants and fruits are ideal for beautifying your garden. Here is a breakdown of the plant's sunlight, irrigation, and soil needs.
Sun and temperature
Strawberry guava can spread quickly and grows well in full sun. It grows well at warmer temperatures, typically between 70-85 ° F (21-29 ° C).
The tree must be watered regularly and abundantly. Although the plants tolerate short periods of drought, guava-red trees need an adequate hydration. They need more water during fruit development so that the berries can ripen properly. Regular watering at least once a week once the plant ripens is good enough to maintain healthy growth.
Strawberry guava needs well-drained, loamy to sandy loam with an acidic pH between 5 and 7. The soil should also be rich in organic matter and slightly warm. Cooler soil temperatures can inhibit seed germination.
The plants need fertilizer three times a year – in summer, spring and autumn. Use a high quality granular citrus fertilizer with a ratio of 6-6-6 for best results.
Strawberry guava plant naturally stays in shape; However, if you plant it for landscape purposes, a small cut can do a lot. They have a naturally beautiful shape. Nevertheless, you can cut off any branches that are invasive or that grow out of bounds. Tilting the branches also means bushy growth if you wish. The ideal time to cut back is in autumn, when the fruit season is over.
Spread of strawberry guava
They can reproduce through seeds or cuttings
Start by removing the seeds from the ripe berries. Wash them well to remove the pulp around the seeds. If you are not currently planting them, you can keep them in the refrigerator or in an airtight box.
Use a sharp knife to break the outer shell of the seed and place it in lukewarm water. Wait 1-2 days for the size to double.
Now take a starting medium and mix it with water. Take a seed pan used for propagation and pour the medium into it.
Put a few seeds (2-3) in each cell of the tray and pour them over the seed stock medium. Water with a jet of water and cover.
Next, take a heating pad and warm it up. Cover it with a thin muslin cloth or plastic wrap to prevent contact with water. Place the starter tray on the heating pad and set it low. The temperature and humidity of the compartment slowly warm up.
Make sure that the temperature with regular nebulization is between 75 and 80 degrees Celsius. Wait 2-8 weeks for the seeds to germinate.
Once the seedling has grown at least two leaves, transplant them into smaller containers and keep them in full but indirect sunlight.
Harvest and store strawberry guava
Strawberry guavas fresh and ready to eat. Source: Carol Green
Strawberry guavas bloom all year round in mild climates. However, the best time is spring. The fruit ripens between 90 and 150 days once the flowers have bloomed. When the fruits ripen on the tree, they develop a better taste.
The trees continue to grow after transplanting and bear fruit after 2-4 years. Although the trees can survive 40 years, their fruit production decreases after 15 years.
If you want to store the fruits, it is best to store the berries when they are still green. You can keep them in the fridge for up to 3-5 weeks without them rotting. Overripe berries tend to bruise within a few days. Strawberry guava fruits are best wrapped in plastic and kept in the fridge or in the fridge.
Strawberry guava Psidium cattleianum has many medicinal benefits. The plant has strong antibacterial, antiseptic and antimicrobial properties. It is extremely rich in vitamin C, fiber, magnesium and potassium. Its high vitamin C content makes it a powerful disease control plant for a stronger immune system.
Because of its high fiber content, eating yellow strawberry guava also regulates bowel movements and helps flush out toxins. The strawberry-guava tree in particular is so rich in nutrients that it is also used to heal wounds and improve skin elasticity. All of these benefits are achieved by eating the fruits and seeds of the plant.
Many cultures roast the seeds of the guava strawberry plant and enjoy them as a coffee substitute.
As already mentioned, the strawberry guava tree has a sweet but slightly spicy taste that is similar to that of strawberries. The guava has a thin bowl that tastes of rose petals. The fruit has a cream-white interior with small edible seeds. All in all, the fruit is very aromatic and tastes of strawberry, lime peel and sometimes of passion fruit.
The fruit appearance of the strawberry guava tree is quite striking. As soon as the fruits are ripe, they turn from maroon to dark red. The size of the fruit can be as small as a penny or slightly larger than a golf ball. The pulp of the guava strawberry is white and yellow with pink-red hues. The seeds are yellow and hard.
Strawberry guava tree is an attractive shrub that requires little maintenance. However, it is vital to monitor the growth of plants and protect them from certain pests and diseases.
Although the shrub is easy to care for, it is invasive, which means that if it is not pruned in time, it will spread quickly. It is important to cut invasive branches and dead stems. It is also important to keep it in full sun and to grow in warm soils. Otherwise the germination time can be extended.
The berries are susceptible to fruit flies, black scales, ants and root knot nematodes. The best way to prevent fruit flies when growing in a container is to cover the potting soil with a layer of aquarium gravel or coarse sand.
By covering, you prevent the flies from laying their eggs on the topsoil and freshly hatched larvae appearing. Black scales can be controlled by trimming some branches regularly to increase airflow and promote more sunlight for the lower limbs.
Pruning dries out the leaves and controls the black scale. Manage ants by setting up natural traps made with boric acid and sugar water. The solution prevents them from climbing the tree.
Although root node nematodes are not as common, trees grown in sandy soil are susceptible to these pests. They can damage the fruits and are difficult to control. The best way to prevent this is to ensure optimal growth conditions and to water and fertilize the trees regularly to keep them vigorous and keep the pests at bay.
Strawberry guava plants can catch algae leaf stains. The best preventive method is proper drainage of the soil, regular hydration and of course a high quality fertilizer. Pruning the plants also improves air circulation, while abundant sunlight regulates humidity.
Question: How long does it take for a guava tree to bear fruit?
It takes 2-4 years for the tree to bear fruit.
Question: How big are strawberry guava trees?
Strawberry guavas can reach heights of up to 15-20 feet.
Strawberry guava tree is a beautiful and lush shrub for your garden. Grow and care for with the help of the above plant guide. In no time you can enjoy the sweetest fruits!
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