Soursop tree’s fruits have an oval-shape and juicy white flesh. It is part of tropical drinks and sherbets. People compare it with a pineapple and bananas mixture. Also, it has acidic flavor.
Follow these steps to grow soursop at your home:
Soursop tree is usually grown from seed.
You need to use the seeds from the fruit. Soak them in warm water and leave them overnight.
Next, plant them ½ inch deep in sterile seed-starting mix. The mix needs to be damp. It will grow in two weeks to a month. You can move the tree outside after it becomes six months old.
When the tree’s trunk diameter gets to ½ – ¾ inches, clip the tree back to 30 inches in height. The most vertical shoot has to be the central leader, while the other 3-4 shoots need to be spaced around the trunk to be the branches.
After you cut any other growth, the central leader needs to be left vertical and all the other branches need to be forced into more horizontal positions. This can be done by wedging clothespins into the crotches between them and the trunk.
Keep the soursop tree in an area exposed to sun and slightly acidic soil which is drained well. Also, it needs to be protected from strong winds. Moreover, this tree should stand 20 feet from buildings or other plants. It is important to mulch it heavily with manure so the soil is damp because of the shallow roots.
The soursop tree has to be fed twice a year, in early spring and early fall. It needs ¼ pound of organic fertilizer per feeding the first year, ½ pound per feeding the second year, and 1 ½ pounds per feeding every year afterwards. Additionally, it is good to renovate the manure every year, to smother weeds and keep the soil moist.
During the second year of the tree, the central leader needs to be cut back by around a third. When new shoots appear beneath the cut, select the best of them and force them outward to create a second tier of horizontal branches. Avoid overly dry or cold conditions for the tree because its leaves may fall.
In the third to fifth year, greenish-yellow blossoms may appear on the trunk or branches of the tree. You can pollinate the flowers by hand.
The fruits are ready to get picked when their shine is gone, the color turns yellowish green and the spines stand up.
Consume the fruit 5-6 days after the harvest because its flavor can decline after that period. Besides eating it raw, the soursop’s pulp or juice can be added to fruit salads, drinks, sherbets, jams and gelatins. Soursop seeds should not be consumed. Remove them before juicing. When kept in the fridge, the soursop can turn black, but its flesh is still good.