What are Feijoas?

Feijoas are a fragrant smooth-skinned fruit with sweet jelly centers when ripe.

They are a native of South America – Paraguay, South Brazil and Uraguay and other names include pineapple guava and guavasteen.

This tropical fruit has many health benefits in addition to tasting fantastic! Feijoas are a rich source of Vitamin C, high in minerals including folate, potassium, manganese and magnesium, provide one quarter of your daily fiber needs and are high in antioxidants to fight free radicals. Free radicals are a major cause of premature aging, disease and cancer. The better your diet, the better you will feel and look.

Feijoas are good for pregnancy as they contain folates and iodine as well as fibre.

Feijoas are also low in kilojoules /calories – 80kj / 49calories/100gms.

The flower petals, as well as being so beautiful, are sweet and can be eaten or added to vegetable or fruit salads or various yummy platters.

Feijoas can be used:    

  • as fresh fruit

  • in fruit salads

  • in juices, smoothies and ice-creams

  • for wines and vodka

  • in jams and chutneys and jelly

  • in savoury dishes like curries

  • and in your baking

Feijoas are ideal to use as flavouring for cream desserts, soufflés, plain cakes and puddings. When pureed they make refreshing iceblocks, mousse, sorbet and ice-cream. To puree, cut in half, scoop out the pulp and discard the peel. However if the peel isn’t bitter, puree the whole fruit!

Feijoas are delicious in fruit salads and compotes especially when mixed with oranges, banana, papaya, strawberries, ginger and lime. Another delicious idea for dessert is to gently poach them in sugar syrup and serve with fresh cream, ice-cream or yoghurt.

Apart from sweets, feijoas can be included in sauces to enhance roast meat. They can replace apples in your favourite apple sauce recipe to serve with roast pork. The jelly is also delicious with chicken either hot or cold as well as other meats. 

  Growing

Sun - Prefers to grow in full sun light

Wind - Feijoa trees have soft branches and in very exposed conditions will require protection from strong winds

Climate - Frost hardy and will handle temperatures down as low as -8 to -10

Soil - Will tolerate most soil conditions from heavy clay soils through to light sandy soils

Fertiliser - Apply a general NPK fertiliser in early spring and again in summer

Pruning - Flowering occurs at the base of new seasons growth it is therefore important to prune early in the season (if pruning is required) to ensure growth happens for flowering to occur. Pruning is required to maintain the desired shape and stimulate to produce more flowering wood. It is also required to open the tree up so birds can have easier access for pollinating. Remove weak and damaged branches back to the main branch and thin the tree, if required, by removing internal branches back to the main trunk.

Pests - Feijoas are fairly Pest and Disease free. Leaf rollers, scale and thrips can attack feijoas and if sever attack occurs can be controlled with insecticides available through your local garden retailers. Sooty mould is a secondary attack after sap sucking insect have attacked the plant. The best way to cure the problem is by spraying for the insect attack. Soapy water will help shift the sooty mould if required.

Hardiness - During winter -10°C

 

 A - Will never ripen properly. Pulled too hard in picking

B - Touch picking maturity. Jellied sections half white / half clear. Not yet ready to eat

C - Retail Display. Jellied sections clear. The beginning of optimum eating maturity.

D-  Jellied sections clear. The end of optimum eating maturity.

E-  Cake making or jam time