Genipap

 
 

Genipap is native to the  Antilles, Central America, and the northern half of South America, although it was perhaps brought to the Antilles by the indians. It reaches a height of 100 feet, with a trunk 2 feet in diameter. The leaves are up to 1 foot long and are grouped toward the ends of branches. Flowers are approximately 1.5 inches wide and are also grouped toward the ends of branches; they are initially white, later turning yellow. The fruit is up to 4.5 inches long and spongy. It flowers from spring to autumn and fruits mature from autumn to the next spring. A refreshing drink is prepared by cutting the fruit in pieces and submerging it for several days in sugared water. The generic name derives from the native name for the tree in the guianas. The species name refers to its geographic origin.


The photographed tree is northwest of the Chemical Engineering Building and is the only member of the species in the campus.

Genipa americana (Rubiaceae)