Soursop, Annona muricata

Within the PermaTree FoodForest we grow high diversity of fruits.

We have planted a total of 3 Has (over 1000 plants) of Giant Soursop in different zones surrounding the FoodForests. You have probably never heard of the guanábana fruit yet. It grows in many parts of the world and is known by many names depending on its country of cultivation. The English name, “soursop” is derived from the Dutch zuurzak which means “sour sack”. In Spain it is known as “Graviola”, in Ecuador and many other Latin American countries it is known as la ‘Guanábana’ (Annona muricata).

Update 2019: We are harvesting the very first Giant Soursop fruits.

Giant Soursop at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018) tropical fruit

The flavour of the guanábana fruit is delicious – literally like a combination of strawberry and pineapple with an underlying creamy flavor of coconut or banana. Nothing less complex. Cant wait to drink own fresh Soursop juice. 🙂

Although its rind is quite bitter, the fruit’s flesh is soft, smooth and sweet, and provides healthy carbohydrates as its major nutrient. Guanábana also contains a significant amount of vitamin C and several B vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin and niacin, along with a high amount of alkaline forming calcium, an important mineral for bone health.

The white segments of the soursop fruit are primarily seedless, although a few seeds are present. The seeds and bark are toxic and contain poisonous alkaloids such as anonaine, muricine, and hydrocyanic acid.

Soursop Fruit Benefits

The Soursop has numerous uses. The young green fruits with seeds that are still soft can be cooked as vegetable. When ripe, the flesh can be eaten off hand or as dessert, or processed into candies, jams and jelly. Its juice is used for flavoring or packaged into refreshing Soursop drinks. The leaves are used as herbal medicine. Because the tree is small and tolerant of partial shade, it can be intercropped with coconut or with large fruit trees like mango, durian, avocado and jackfruit.

The fruit comprises of 67.5% pulp, 20% fruit skin, 8.5% fruit seeds and 4% core pieces.

Soursop contains abundant amounts of vitamin C and several B vitamins like thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin as well as minerals like calcium, phosphorus and a small amount of iron.

Read about all the Health / Medicinal benefits of the Soursop Fruit and Leafs.

Giant Soursop at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018) tropical fruit

Giant Soursop (Annona Muricata) at PermaTree in Ecuador

Soursop Juice

The Soursop being a super healthy tropical fruit needs no additional ingredients except water. Tool of choice would be a blender. Peel the soursop fruit removing the green skin. Mix 50% ripe white soursop flesh without the seeds with 50% water. Don’t strain the white soursop flesh (you would miss the health fiber). Don’t add any flavoring ingredients. Don’t use ice. If you want the juice to be cold keep it in the fridge for a while. If you got a organic soursop it should be naturally super tasty. Blend the white soursop flesh for about 30 seconds.

The best tropical juice ever should taste like a combination of strawberry and pineapple, with a hint of creaminess and sour citrus.

Drinking a 100% organic Soursop will give you the following health benefits: High levels of vitamin C keep the urinary tract clean, and vast amounts of fiber improve digestive health. The fruit juice also contains a number of other nutrients, including potassium, magnesium, thiamin, copper, niacin, folate, iron, and riboflavin.

Soursop (Annona muricata) tropical fruit juice permatree ecuador Soursop Juice

Ecuadorian Rainforest Soursop

The Ecuadorian Soursop has special characteristics that make it very different from the others. This might be because Ecuador is located in Parallel 0, which helps increase the amount of nutrients, minerals and vitamins in the fruits. Additionally our organic management. Which consists of  replenishing the soil fertility without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilizers. Without the use of any artificial ingredients, preservatives or irradiation. Also because of our location at the edge of the amazon basin with lots of rainfall. Unlike the Soursop farms in the coast of Ecuador, we need no irrigation for the Soursop plantation, which is a highly water hungry plant. This makes a much more positive carbon footprint and water footprint for the Soursop we produce. Initially we choose to grow Soursop at the PermaTree farm because the 2km away research program on Amazonian Fruit from CEDAMAZ at the National University of Loja in Ecuador. Identified the Soursop (Annona Muricata) as promising fruit species originating from this region. SourceCEDAMAZ vol 2 (2012) PDF

Needles to say we have been the first farm to plant soursop in the entire Oriente region of Ecuador and now 2 years later we allready know of 2 other farms with Soursop. This is fantastic because this region is poor in agriculture and has so much potential beside the gold and copper farming activities by Canadian and Chinese mining companies. They currently represent the biggest job-creators in the region. Which the problematic detail – that mining is not at all sustainable. Not for the people (social) and not for the environment (rivers, land use, etc). Additionally its well known that many issues will appear in in 10 to 15 years from today… This is why we are very happy when we can inspire local people to focus on renewable and healthy alternatives to mining.

Giant Soursop Fruits

Giant Soursop at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018) tropical fruit Giant Soursop at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018) tropical fruit

Soursop Tree Leafs

Giant Soursop Leaf at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018)

Giant Soursop Leaf at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018)

Giant Soursop Leaf at PermaTree in Ecuador (2018)

Soursop Plantation Areas

3Has Giant Soursop - PermaTree (2017) Ecuador

Our Soursop plantation overview map. As you can see we have been organizing all the plantation in different zones. Between the soursop zones we have different food forest zones and lots of diverse Bamboo. As Ground cover we use Arachis pintoi – which is a great forage plant. Should help us in connection with the 15’000 Vetiver grasses matts we have planted within the Adaptive Contour Access Path (ACAP) to slowly improve the soil quality from within.