7/15/09

Big Crop of Miracle Fruit

We came home yesterday to a pleasant surprise. We have dozens of miracle fruit berries ripe! They need to be eaten because they have a short life span. Read on for a bit more info about this awesome little berry.

When the fleshy part of the fruit is eaten, the fruit reacts with the taste buds in the tongue, causing sour foods to taste sweet. You eat the fruit as you would eat a fresh cherry, except keep it in your mouth for about 30 seconds before discarding the pit. It tastes good.

The fruit works by distorting the shape of sweetness receptors so that they become responsive to acids, instead of sugar and other sweet things. This effect lasts 15-30 minutes. I've been growing the plant for years, and it's finally mature enough to produce berries!

It is completely natural
It grows naturally all over Africa
It is not genetically engineered
It is not a type of tribal drug or voodoo magic
It is not some new fad
It's organic because I don't use pesticides in my garden

So, on to my personal testimony about eating my first berry a few months ago.........

I the berry like it was a cherry. It was over in about 30 seconds and was kind of uneventful. The taste was like a cross between a cranberry and mellon and the taste didn't linger...it went away after 30 more seconds and I didn't think it was working because my mouth didn't taste sweet.

Then, I gave a lemon wedge a lick. It tasted like very sweet lemonaide. Then I ate the whole lemon. The sour didn't make my lips pucker...it tasted like the lemon had sugar injected into every single little bit of pulp.

Then I ate a lime. Same exact reaction.
Then I ate an M&M...it tasted no different than normal because this fruit only reacts with acidic flavors.
Then I ate tobasco sauce...it was like sweet BBQ sauce. My throat could still feel that it was spicy, but the flavor was sweet.

I could ramble on....but I won't. Go ahead and google Miracle Fruit. It's scientific name (genus and species) is Synsepalum dulcificum.
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8 comments:

  1. Hi Danielle, today I did a post on the essential oil of patchouli and used the photograph of your patchouli plant on my blog. I gave you complete credit and acknlowledgement and added a link to your blog. Please come and visit!

    This is a fabulous garden blog and it's wonderful to see someone your age so knowledgable about the plant world.

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  2. That's fantastic that you were able to grow them so well. They are not so easy to get right.

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  3. Wow! Good Luck. That is a good plant.
    The miracle fruit, or miracle berry plant (Synsepalum dulcificum), produces berries that, when eaten, cause sour foods (such as lemons and limes) subsequently consumed to taste sweet. The berry was first documented by explorer Chevalier des Marchais[2] who searched for many different fruits during a 1725 excursion to its native West Africa. Marchais noticed that local tribes picked the berry from shrubs and chewed it before meals. The plant grows in bushes up to 20 feet (6.1 m) high in its native habitat, but does not usually grow higher than ten feet in cultivation, and it produces two crops per year, after the end of the rainy season. It is an evergreen plant that produces small red berries, with flowers that are white and which are produced for many months of the year. The seeds are about the size of coffee beans.
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  4. Okay, you have convinced me. I am going to have to grow this fruit now! How hardy is the plant in Florida winters?

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  5. I took my plant indoors twice when the weather threatened below 30. Other than that, it's hearty in zone 9b

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  6. hi Danielle. Just stumbled upon your blog, which is very informative and super cute! Just wondered if you grew the miracle fruit from a seed or seedling, and where did you order it from? Thanks, and i look forward to reading your blog more in the future, have a great day :)
    joan

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  7. Joan-
    I ordered from Top Tropicals. It was in a 1 gal pot. I ordered it Feb 08 and it produced tons of fruit for the first time summer of 09.

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  8. It looks a bit like a quandong which grows in West Australia. Is it related? Quandong fruit is a bit rounder but the leaves look very similar.

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