Annonaceae Annona squamosa L.
Source: Magness et al. 1971
The tree is related to cherimoya, but is smaller, up to 20 feet, has narrower leaves, and is a little less hardy. Flowers and fruits are borne in clusters of 2 to 4 on short axillary branches. Flowers open and fruit sets over several months, so fruits in various stages of development are on the tree at one time. The fruit is generally heart-shaped, up to 3 inches across, and is composed of many loosely coherent carpels, with rounded tips. The surface of the fruit is very uneven, a result of depressions between the carpel terminals. Carpel tips may separate in ripe fruit, exposing some of the white pulp below. Pulp is custard like, sweet and contains numerous seeds. It is the edible portion, generally consumed fresh. Sugar apples are important fruits in many tropical areas. They are grown as dooryard trees in southern Florida, and are of some importance in Puerto Rico.