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Pouteria campechiana / Lucuma campechiana - Canistel


Native to:



Central America.

Tolerant of a wide variety of soils. Up to 1400 meters above sea level. 15 meter tall tree.

Pouteria campechiana / Lucuma campechiana - Canistel

Ecological value:

Productive on soils considered too shallow or poor for other fruit trees. Can produce fruit year found. Begins fruiting at 5-7 years old, or 3-4 if grafted. Pollinated by insects. Fast growing. Susceptible to drought.

Material uses:

Latex extracted from tee has been used to dilute chicle. Wood is compact, strong, heavy and hard, and is used for rafters and planks in construction. The genus pouteria is related to Manilkara, another genus that produces heavy and hard woods.

Edible uses:

Fresh fruits. Has consistency of a hard-boiled egg-yolk. Used in marmalades and jams, in milkshakes and ice creams and in custards. Fruit is high in potassium and vitamins.

Medicinal use:

A decoction of astringent bark is used as a febrifuge or applied on skin sores and blisters. Seeds are used to treat ulcers.

Other details:

Tree is vigorous and healthy with few pests and diseases. Good wind resistance. Can become invasive. Ornamental value. Known as canister or egg fruit.


Jennifer Yaing/Christine Facella


“Pouteria Campechiana - Useful Tropical Plants.” n.d. Accessed November 16, 2023.
Facciola. S., ‘Cornucopia II’, Kampong Publications, California, 1998
Image source: Forest & Kim Starr.

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