Growing Sitaphal in India is easy and rewarding! Here’s all you need to know about How to Grow Sugar Apple and enjoy homegrown Custard Apple.
Sitaphal is one of the most popular fruits in India but is quite expensive in some places. If you want to enjoy it for free, then learn How to Grow Sugar Apple at home in India easily!
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What is Sugar Apple?
Native to the tropics, this shrub is popular for its sweet and pulpy fruit. Sugar apple features creamy-white flesh around black seeds. Its outer portion has a green, knobby texture.
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How to Grow Sugar Apple?
You can propagate the plant from seeds but it will take quite a long time. The seeds take 35-40 days to germinate but you will have to wait for more than 4-6 years before it starts producing fruits. So, it would be a good idea to get a plant from a nursery.
Growing Requirements of Sugar Apple
Sugar apples do best in full sun. Avoid keeping the plant in the shade as it will result in no fruits at all. Pick a location that gets 4-6 hours of direct sunlight daily.
Water thoroughly and deeply whenever the topsoil feels dry to touch. Avoid letting the growing medium go dry completely as it can cause fruit and leaf drop.
This undemanding plant can do well in regular garden soil but does best in well-draining, loose, and fertile soil with neutral to slightly alkaline pH.
Climate and Temperature
Sugar apple responds well to the tropical warmth, and humid climate of India. The temperature range of 22-34 C is optimum.
To accelerate pollination, it’s recommended to attract pollinators in the garden or use the hand pollination method.
Taking Care of Sugar Apple
Use a 3-10-10 fertilizer to promote growth and fruits. You can also go for a 6-6-6 blend. Fertilize the plant once in 2 months. Applying organic fertilizer like aged manure or compost during the growing phase is also beneficial.
Protection from Wind
This softwood tree is susceptible to getting damaged by dry and strong winds that can cause drying of the stigma, which eventually affects the pollination.
Pests and Diseases
Sugar apple is susceptible to pest attacks. Use plastic, paper, or polyethylene bags to cover the fruits. The plant can catch anthracnose and leaf spot diseases that occur due to untimely rain, excess humidity, and overwatering.