What type of 'fruit' is this?

neptune24April 24, 2011

I was going for a walk tonight, and I discovered a tree with some strange "fruit" on our property that I'd never noticed before. They're about the size of small cherries, but beige. They smell like dirty socks, are quite mushy, and have a large seed inside. Here's a picture:

At the upper right of the picture is the skin of one of the fruits along with the large seed. Does anybody have any idea what these are? Thanks for any info.

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rasputinj

Looks like a Longan to me, like a lychee in taste and seed or nut in middle is similar. I would like to grow one. I wonder if they smell they way they because they are over ripe? But that is my uneducated guess here is a picture of one at this link

Here is a link that might be useful: Longan

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 12:32AM
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houstontexas123(z9a)

yea, looks like longan. they've gone bad.

good fruit would be firm, sweet, juicy and fragrant.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 12:46AM
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neptune24

Thanks for the replies, rasputinj and houstontexas123. I looked up the longan on Wikipedia. Oh, sorry I forgot to include my zone last time! Anyway, the article says that it doesn't really tolerate temperatures below 40 degrees, so I don't think it could be a longan. Last year, it got down to about 13 degrees where we live.

Any other ideas? Could it be some poisonous fruit, I wonder? LOL.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 1:04AM
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aznboi385

yea...looks like a longan if I were to guess. Any other pictures? What color was the seed? If it looks black and is kind of oval shaped and smooth, then it should be a longan. the fruit surround the seed should be clear. One side of the seed should be a bit whitish/beigish where the stem connects to the fruit. If it does look like that, then it should be a longan, although there's something not quite right when I look at the pictures. If it smells like stinky socks, then it probably went bad and that explains why it looks kinda odd to me.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 1:28AM
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lucky_p

Look like the 'fruits' of chinaberry - Melia azedarach - to me.
They were (and probably still are) pretty common around old homesteads/barnlots, growing up in UCLA(upper corner of lower Alabama).

Here is a link that might be useful: Chinaberry - Melia azedarach

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 7:07AM
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strudeldog_gw

2nd on the Chinaberry. Don't eat them. A messy weak wooded quick growing tree, if you have berries you should notice Fragrant purple blooms on the tree

    Bookmark   April 24, 2011 at 9:34AM
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neptune24

yea...looks like a longan if I were to guess. Any other pictures? What color was the seed?

That's all the pix, aznboi385. The whole seed was beige too.

the fruit surround the seed should be clear.

There was little if any fruit. Thanks for the pointer, though.

Look like the 'fruits' of chinaberry - Melia azedarach - to me.
They were (and probably still are) pretty common around old homesteads/barnlots, growing up in UCLA(upper corner of lower Alabama).

Thanks, lucky_p. I'll give your link a gander. Yes, this would qualify as old farmland.

2nd on the Chinaberry. Don't eat them. A messy weak wooded quick growing tree, if you have berries you should notice Fragrant purple blooms on the tree

I wouldn't eat them if you paid me, strudeldog! ;) It's weird--the tree on which I found these berries is dead, and the stalks of the berries are not attached to the tree, so it seems that they fell from a tree that is higher up. I'll have to look in the daytime and see if I can spot anything.

CHINAberry. Sigh. Do we get *anything* good from China??? LOL.

P.S. I was all set to make chinaberry brownies, but now you've changed my mind. ;)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2011 at 6:24AM
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neptune24

I added a couple of new pix to my photo album:

Chinaberry

Apparently this is definitely a chinaberry. The tree is big, though--about 50 feet!

Thanks for all the responses.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 12:44AM
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Robin29

The smelly fruit is from a male ginko tree.

    Bookmark   October 19, 2011 at 12:16PM
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fabaceae_native

Actually the female gingko produces the 'fruit', naturally. It's rare here in the US, since male trees are planted almost exclusively. The seed is a popular edible in Asia, and is quite good.

But instead of smelling like dirty socks, the rotting yellow 'fruit' smells like rancid butter (thus the decision to plant male trees). Male gingko trees smell like something variously described as chlorine or semen in the early summer.

Chinaberry seems like the right guess to me too...

    Bookmark   October 19, 2011 at 12:45PM
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flatwoods_farm(9A Riverview, F)

Yup-I vote for chinaberry-longan trees would easily freeze in your zone. paul.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 2:23PM
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carolync1(z8/9 CA inland)

The primary advantage of Chinaberry trees is that they can grow with very little care and very little water. There is an umbrella-shaped variant that comes true from seed.

There is a supersitition that sitting on a blanket under a Chinaberry tree is bad luck (sometimes because a branch could fall on you). There is also a superstition that if you plant a Chinaberry tree or a Cedar tree, you will die when it is big enough to shade your grave.

Happy Halloween.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dragons don't like Chinaberry trees

    Bookmark   October 31, 2011 at 12:01PM
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