« PreviousContinue »
a. /'. w. Collection. Plate XX
This tree, which is a native of Mexico, is said to have been named after Cardinal Casimiro Gomez. The first tree of its kind in Hawaii was planted in 1884, at the Government Nursery. Honolulu. The seed came from Santa Barbara, California, where there grows today, a tree more than eighty years old, and which still bears its fruit. It is a tall evergreen with irregular branches; its digitate leaves are dark and glossy. The trunk is ashen-grey, with warty excrescences. The fruit, which matures in April and May, is large, 1 to 4 inches in diameter; it is depressed-globular and somewhat ribbed, like a tomato; in color it is a light-green, turning to a dull yellow when ripe, and it has a very thin skin. The pulp is yellow, resembling that of an over-ripe papaia. and has a melting, peach-like flavor. It contains from 1 to 3 large, oblong seeds, which are said to be deleterious.
a. P. W. Collection. PLate XXI
The Peach-tree is said bv some authorities to be indigenous to Persia, while by others it is claimed to be a native of China. It is a hardy tree, and has been known to bear fruit precociously even in the second year after planting. If allowed to do so, the Peach will grow to a height of about 15 feet; but it should be pruned annually, in order to secure a good crop. Its leaves are lanceolate and coarsely serrate. The flowers are solitary, pink in color, and appear before the leaves. The fruit is soft and pubescent at maturity. The stone is deeply pitted and very hard. There are two well-marked varieties, the cling-stone and the free-stone.
I'lupalakua and Makawao, Maui, once had the reputation of growing finely-flavored seedling peaches; however, many of these trees have been injured by cattle, and others have been destroyed by root-fungus and insect pests. In several localities in Hawaii good peaches have been grown from imported varieties.
a. F. w. Collection. Plate XXII
Chrysophyllum Cainito (purple variety).
This tree is a native of the West Indies, and although not common in Hawaii, there are good specimens to be found in many gardens. It has large irregular spreading branches, grows to a height of from 10 to 25 feet, and has rather thick foliage. Propagation is ordinarily effected by seeds, which germinate readily, when fresh. It can also be grown from cuttings of the ripe wood. The tree derives its name from the words "chrysos," gold, and "phyllon," a leaf; referring to the golden-russet color of the under-side of the beautiful, glossy green leaves. The small flowers, which appear from June until October, are solitary at the nodes or in fascicles. The fruit, which ripens in April, is round, about 3 inches in diameter, has a smooth, tough rind, about 1-16 inch thick, which is a deep purple in color. A cross-section of the fruit shows the edible pulp with its numerous black seeds, and the star-shaped core, from which the fruit derives its common name of Star Apple. Unless the fruit is thoroughly ripe, its milky juice is remarkably astringent.