Species Guide: Rare Fruit Trees


The egg-shaped fruits of Spondias dulcis. Photo by Goh Shang Ming

Common name: Golden Apple, Ambarella, Jew Plum

Malay name: Kedondong

Scientific name: Spondias dulcis

Conservation status: Cultivated, Native to Malaysia


A small tree of 9-12 m tall. Leaves are divided into pointed leaflets. It bears small, white, clustered flowers. Fruits are egg-shaped, turn from green to golden yellow when ripe.

Flower cluster of Spondias dulcis. Photo by Goh Shang Ming

Habit: Perennial tree

Cultivation: It is planted by seeds, hardwood stem cuttings, stumps, air-layering or grafting

Ecological function: The flowers of this tree attract pollinators. It is planted as a living fence.

Pollinator: Bees

Soil: Sand, loam, clay

Moisture: Well-drained soils

Shade: No shade, semi-shade

Use: The fruits may be eaten raw, cooked or made into juice, jellies, pickles or flavorings. Young leaves are used as a seasoning or cooked as a vegetable. Mature leaves are used in salads.

By ShangMing

A plant lover. I like small, medium, gigantic, ordinary, exotic, local, foreign plants. Just because they thrive to stand out.