Annona squamosa

BOTANICAL NAME:- Annona squamosa.


SINHALA : Anona, Sini-atta
TAMIL : Sittapan, Sitapalam
ENGLISH : Sugar Apple, SweetSop, Custard apple


A small tree, about 3-8 m high, leafy branches, pubescent or glabrate, hairs grayish-white, appressed or erefo-patent

LEAVES.- Simple, alternate, stipulate, 3.7-7.5 cm long, 1.8-3.7 cm broad, oblong-lancelot or elliptic, obtuse or subacute, entire, pellucido-punctate. glabrous above.

FLOWERS:- Solitary, bisexual, leaf- opposed, or 2-4 on short extra-axillary branchlets (period-May to July).

FRUITS:- Globular,cordate-ovoid or conical,6-9 cm in diameter, yellowish green, glucose, comprised of loosely cohering rounded pistils that fall apart quite easily, the pulp white, sweet, soft and juicy, having a very mild agreeable flavour. Seeds brownish-black and smooth (Jayaweera, 1981).


Originated in tropical America and West Indies (Querol, 1992) and is frequently cultivated in India, Sri Lanka and other tropical Asiatic countries (Bose and Mitra, 1985).

EDIBLE PART: The fruit.

FOOD USE: The riped fruit is frequently eaten.


Moisture -70.5 g, 
Energy -104 Kcal, 
Protein -1.6 g, Fat -0.4 g, 
Calcium - 17 mg, 
Phosphorus - 47 mg, 
Iron - 1.5 mg, 
Thiamine - 10 meg, 
Riboflavin -170 meg, 
Niacin -1.3 meg, 
Vitamin C-37 meg. (Perera et al., 1979).

The leaves and seeds of this tree contain an alkaloid. The seeds in addition contain a neutral resin and a fixed oil with an irritant poison. The bark contains the alkaloid anonaine. Hydrocyanic acid has also been found in the leaves, bark and roots. The seeds, crushed into a paste with water, are applied to the scalp to destroy lice or used as an abortifacient if applied to the uterus in pregnant women. The bruised leaves of the riped fruit, applied with salt, induce or hasten suppuration of malignant tumors. The unriped fruit is given for diarrhoea, dysentery and atonic dyspepsia. (Jayaweera, 1981).


Areas of cultivation - occurs in home gardens in low and mid-country wet zone.

Planting material - seeds.

Spacing -5m apart.

Fertilizer - Compound NPK and Mg at rates up to 1 kg/tree every 3 months.

Harvesting - Best picked immature and ripened by storage in a dark, warm place.


Fruits once riped can be kept only for a few days.