Sapota (Manilkara zapota), also known as chikoo or sapodilla, is a fruit-bearing tree that is native to Central America and the Caribbean. The tree can grow up to 30 meters in height and produces a delicious, sweet fruit that is rich in vitamins and minerals. In this article, we will explore the different varieties of sapota that can be planted, the best soil and water conditions, how to take care of the plant, and where to plant them in your Indian garden.
|Name||Sapota (Manilkara zapota)|
|Scientific name||Manilkara zapota|
|Height||Up to 30 meters|
|Canopy spread||Up to 10 meters|
|Years for fruiting||4-5 years|
|Fruits per tree||200-300 per year|
Introduction to the Plant
Sapota is a tropical fruit that is widely grown in India, Southeast Asia, and other tropical regions around the world. It has a unique flavor and texture, with a soft, grainy pulp that is sweet and aromatic. The tree is an evergreen that can grow up to 30 meters tall and has glossy, dark green leaves.
Different Varieties That Can Be Planted
There are many different varieties of sapota that can be grown in India. Some of the most popular varieties include:
- Cricket Ball: This variety is known for its large, round fruit and high yields.
- Kalipatti: This variety produces small, sweet fruit and is popular in South India.
- Pala: This variety is known for its large fruit size and sweet flavor.
- Dhakki: This variety is popular in Gujarat and produces sweet, aromatic fruit.
Soil and Water Conditions for the Best Growth
Sapota trees prefer well-drained, fertile soil with a pH between 6.0 and 7.5. They require regular watering, especially during the dry season, but should not be waterlogged. The tree requires a lot of water, but they can also be tolerant of drought conditions. The tree requires regular fertilization to maintain healthy growth and fruit production.
How to Take Care of the Plant
Sapota trees require regular pruning to control their size and shape. They should be pruned after each fruiting season to remove dead or diseased wood. The tree should be fertilized regularly with a balanced fertilizer that is high in potassium. Mulching around the base of the tree can help to retain moisture and suppress weeds.
Which Part of the Garden Should It Be Planted?
Sapota trees require a lot of sunlight and should be planted in a spot that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight each day. They also require protection from strong winds and cold temperatures, so it is best to plant them in a sheltered location.
Fruiting Year and Yield
Sapota trees typically start producing fruit in their fourth or fifth year. The tree can produce a large amount of fruit, with each tree producing between 200 and 300 fruits per year, depending on the variety and growing conditions.
Growing sapota in your Indian garden is an excellent way to enjoy fresh, tropical fruit at home. With the right soil and water conditions, regular fertilization, and proper care, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of sweet, delicious sapota. Consider planting a variety of sapota to enjoy different flavors and textures. Remember to plant them in a sunny, sheltered location and to keep the soil moist and well-drained. With a little effort, you can enjoy the taste of freshly harvested sapota right in your backyard.