Syzygium malaccense, commonly known as Malacca Apple, is a species of flowering tree that is native to Malaysia and Indonesia (Sumatra and Java). It has been introduced throughout the tropics, including many Caribbean countries such as Jamaica, Suriname, Dominican Republic, and Trinidad and Tobago. It is also known as jambu bol (Indonesian, meaning "ball guava"), Malay Rose Apple, Otaheite Cashew and Pommerac (derived from pomme Malac, meaning "Malaysian Apple" in French). Highly ambiguous terms, such as "rose apple", "water apple", "mountain apple", "pomarrosa" or "plum rose" are sometimes used for this plant or its fruit; they can refer to almost any species of Syzygium grown for its fruit. The name "Otaheite apple" is used too (in Jamaica), but should better be used for the Tahitian Apple (Spondias dulcis); "Otaheite" is an obsolete transcription of "Tahiti". Its Hawaiian name is ʻōhiʻa ʻai, meaning "edible Metrosideros polymorpha".
The fruit is oblong-shaped and dark red in color, although some varieties have white or pink skin. The flesh is white and surrounds a large seed. Jam is prepared by stewing the flesh with brown sugar and ginger.
Malacca Apple trees thrive in tropical climates with an annual rainfall of 152 cm (60 in) or more. They can grow at a variety of altitudes, from sea level up to 2,740 m (8,990 ft). The trees themselves can grow from 12–18 m (39–59 ft) in height. They flower in early summer, bearing fruit three months afterward. In Costa Rica they flower earlier, with ripe fruit in June.
In Hawaii Syzygium malaccense is called Mountain apple, and was brought to the islands by Polynesians probably 1000 to 1700 years ago. The Polynesians reached the Hawaiian islands bringing plants and animals that were important to them. Mountain apple was one of the 'canoe plants'.
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