Plant Spotlight On Pineapple Guava
June 13, 2022
Pineapple guava (Feijoa sellowiana or Acca sellowiana) is a handsome, evergreen shrub or small tree that offers much to the home landscape. Its attractive, oval and silvery green leaves bring year-round color and texture. This evergreen can be left to grow into its natural multi-stemmed shrubby shape or pruned into a tree form or shaped into a hedge. Feijoa’s unique blossoms put on a fabulous show in the spring. Sugar-pink petals lay back and over the stem revealing vibrant red stamens tipped in gold. Bees, butterflies, and birds find the flowers irresistible, just as we are delighted by the fruit.
Deer tend to ignore these shrubs. Despite its considerable attributes, Pineapple guava remains underutilized by professionals and homeowners alike!
Sun/Shade: Full sun or afternoon shade where summers are extremely hot.
Height: 15’ feet unpruned
Width: 15’ feet unpruned
Bloom Time: Spring
Bloom Color: Soft and medium pink with bright red stamens
Wildlife: Bees, butterflies, hummingbirds
Hardy feijoa is the epitome of a care-free plant and is as unfussy as they come. Plant them in full sun but give them afternoon shade where summers are excessively hot. They enjoy soil that’s on the moist side so regular watering is recommended. However, they won’t tolerate soggy soil (wet feet), so well-draining soil is a must. Once established, they are considered drought tolerant. Application of a well-balanced fertilizer a couple times a year is welcomed, as is a layer of compost every year.
Find the perfect pineapple guava variety:
- 'Apollo' produced medium-sized fruit, is self-fertile, and will pollinate with other varieties.
- 'Nikita' produces early and has a compact growing habit perfect for containers.
- 'Coolidge' produces early with small to medium fruits, self-fertile, and is does well in cooler areas.
- 'Andre' has oblong to round fruits and has a rich flavor with few seeds.
- 'Besson' produces small to medium-sized, aromatic fruits tinged with red.
- ‘Moore’ produces large fruit during midseason.
- ‘Mammouth’ produces very large, flavorful fruit.
- 'Edenvale Late' produces medium-sized, flavorful fruit in late January. It thrives in coastal areas.
Both the flowers and the egg-shaped fruits of feijoas are edible. The fruits are 3”-5” long and blend in with the color of the leaves. Their skins range from smooth to pebbly depending on the variety. In the fall the fruit will ripen, becoming strongly fragrant, and detach easily from the stem. Pineapple guavas have a unique fruity/sweet/tangy flavor that’s often described as a combination of strawberry, pineapple, guava, and mint. Eat them raw scooped out with a spoon or add it to ice cream, smoothies, or even as a chutney. Feijoa flowers can be added to salads, iced tea, or to make jelly.
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