27 Different Types of Fruit Trees (Plus More Fruitful Facts)

Interested to know and learn about all the different types of fruit trees? Here's a massive list of them with photos and detailed descriptions.
- Advertisement -

A beautiful orchard

All cultures have hundreds of cultural connections to their local fruits and various legendary myths about their magical healing or restorative qualities. Even if not magical, fruits are an essential part of the human diet, and fruit-producing trees have evolved over billions of years, alongside every other species, beautifully linked with the ecosystem.

Fruits are an important part of nearly every type of cuisine in the world; in many places, native fruits are even made into expensive delicacies. The Densuke watermelon from Japan, for example, is said to have a ‘special kind of sweetness’ that makes people pay thousands of dollars for one. Farmed on a northern island of Japan, only a hundred grow every year!

Fruits are also a vital source of nutrition. Almost all vitamins that we need for the healthy functioning of our bodies can be found in fruits. However, trees do not produce fruits just for us. Fruits are seed houses for trees; they are a mechanism through which plants can spread their genes as far and wide as possible so more of their kind populate the land.

The ovaries of flowering trees turn into fleshy, dry, or ripe fruits. Seeds are the fertilized ovum of a tree, therefore when they are planted, a new tree is born. Fruits are not found exclusively on trees, but also shrubs, small plants, or ground vegetations. The main objective of fruit trees is to attract various land animals, birds, insects, and humans to their fruits so that they can be consumed and their seeds replanted. That is why fruits taste delicious.

So what makes a fruit tree and how many types of fruit trees are there exactly? Read this article to find out all about the fruit trees that supply important vitamins and enzymes to our diet.  Interestingly, this article on the different varieties of fruit trees also reveals the many different types of fruit you can eat – but not all (such as berries which don’t grow on trees).

Fruits in Our Diet

The fruits we eat genuinely seem like a gift from nature. A small bowl of pineapple, for example, fulfill 131% of our daily requirement for vitamin C, and 76% for manganese. Grapefruits are known for their ability to reduce insulin levels in the blood while balancing your cholesterol and preventing kidney stones.

Avocados consist mainly of healthy fats but are also packed with loads of potassium and magnesium. All of these nutrients are known to promote heart health. Blueberries, on the other hand, are rich in antioxidants that reduce the risk of heart disease and Alzheimer’s while giving the immune system a boost. Pomegranates have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce the risk of cancer.

Besides these, there are many other fruits that are a source of dietary fiber, rare vitamins, enzymes, and antioxidants which makes them an indispensable part of the human diet.

The Evolution of Fruit Trees

430 million years ago in the Devonian period, the first seed-producing trees came about. Through the entire Carboniferous period to the quarternary period today, trees have been flourishing on the earth. Trees evolved further with every generation, adapting more and more to the environment. Just by existing, they provided enough oxygen and temperature balance to the planet. It is because of the sublime relationship of trees with the planet that complex organisms came about, who paved the way for human life to evolve as well.

Since trees rely on their fruit to disseminate their seeds, their fruits evolved to be edible to birds and other animals. Some fruits are even selectively edible. The jalapeno fruit, for example, has a chemical called capsaicin, a pepper that scares of all animals except humans, who know better. Birds are however immune to capsaicin, so they can feast on these peppers and send out their seeds as far as they can fly.

Source: Royal Forestry Society

Fruit Trees in the Ecosystem

An important role that fruit trees play in the ecosystem is the primary conversion of sunlight into food for other secondary members of the food chain. Photosynthesis is not only beneficial to plants as it produces food for them, but also stores excess energy in fruits, leaves, stems, and sometimes even roots. When we incorporate plants in our diet, the nutrients in them benefit us immensely.

All ecosystems are built on a system of energy transfer. Planet Earth is powered by its sun, but animals usually do not have the tools to convert this energy into a usable form. So plants do their job for them, and the energy transfer continues in the form of food webs. Many animals such as birds, lizards, and invertebrates depend on plants for their food, which in turn are preyed on by other tertiary animals.

Trees are taller for the very purpose of harboring as much sunlight as possible to convert into functional energy; this gives them plenty of raw materials to produce delicious and nutritious fruits for us.

Source: Science Learning Hub

Habitat and Geographical Occurrence

From the forests of the Amazon to deserts and savannahs, fruit trees are found everywhere in their different forms and variations. Each continent has several specialized species that have evolved suited to the climate and landscape. Except for Antarctica, which has very low plantation level in general, fruit trees are a common feature of every continent.

Source:  LibGuides

Fruits in Different Cultures

Fruits are usually considered a symbol of abundance, fertility, and reward. Some common fruits have been around for so long that they have become part of the local mythology and culture.

Many such myths and stories seem to surround apples. In Greek mythology, Hercules had to acquire a special type of apple as one of his twelve great labors. In Norse mythology, apples represent eternal youth, and Adam and Eve were banished for heaven for eating the apple of ‘knowledge’. Even Snow White was poisoned by her stepmother through an apple.

There are interesting origin stories for some fruits as well, like Tahiti, where legends claim that the first coconut came from the head of an eel called Tuna. To the Romans, the pomegranate was a symbol for marriage, and earlier brides wore pomegranate plant wreaths on their heads. The Greeks also considered them a symbol of beauty, love, marriage, and fertility. For Muslims around the world, pomegranates are fruits from heaven.

Types and Subtypes

Pome Fruits

Pome fruits are members of the plant family Rosaceae, and subfamily pomoideae. These are fruits that have a tough, fleshy, edible membrane on the outside covering the core of small seeds in the center.

Some main pome fruits are apples, pears, and quince, which are harvested in late summer to late autumn months.

Source: Department of Primary Industries

Stone Fruits or Drupes

Drupes or stone fruits are indehiscent, which means that they have an outer fleshy part that surrounds the single shell inside housing the seeds. They usually develop from a single carpel and include fruits as mango, olive, coconut, apricot, cherry, peach and plum amongst many others.

Source: University of California

Common Fruit Trees

Below we list, explain and provide pictures of the many common fruit trees throughout the world.

Apples
 Ripe red apples in an orchard

Apple trees are extremely popular to plant because of their value as nutritious snacks. There are various species of apple trees found in different parts of the world. They have huge amounts of fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and potassium. They reduce the risk of diabetes and cancer, even Alzheimer’s in older people.

The pectin content in apples is another notable health benefit. Pectin is a fiber that feeds the good bacteria in your gut, which in turn helps in improving your metabolic health

Oranges

Orange trees in orange grove

Oranges are one of the most popular and nutritious fruits in the world.

Orange trees are not only aesthetically pleasing to plant in your garden, but also provide a large quantity of vitamin C and potassium. They supply vitamins such as thiamine and folate as well

The citric acid found in oranges may help in the dissolution of kidney stones and a healthy hydration supply in the body.

Source: Healthline

MangoesAlmost-ripe mangoes hanging from a mango tree.

There are many variations of the delicious mango fruit, and they are especially found in the SouthEast Asian region. Mangoes are an excellent source of vitamin C, and they also contain soluble fiber with several health benefits.

Mangoes also contain antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that lower the probability of contracting diseases, especially diabetes.

LemonsA plantation of lemon trees.

Lemons are similar to oranges in the impressive amount of vitamin C and citric acid they contain. In the human body, lemons help in increasing iron absorption, which helps in the prevention of anemia. Lemons are also known to help in curbing nausea, improving metabolism, and improving skin conditions.

Once planted, lemon trees take at least 3-5 to produce fruit, so choose something else if your time is constrained.

Source: Nature and More

PearsFresh pears on a tree.

If you choose to plant a pear tree in your backyard or garden, you may be in for a rewarding experience. If taken care of properly, a pear tree can grow to be up to around forty feet tall! They can be grown in a variety of regions in Europe, Asia, and northern Africa.

Not only is the pear fruit full of protein and fiber, but the tree itself can also be a wonderful addition to your garden because of its character, and its ability to survive for over 50 years.

Source: Harvest to Table

Apricots White and pink apricot blossoms.

Apricot trees, when not producing fruit, are decorated by the blooming pink and white flowers. This tree in your garden will add vibrant beauty to the surroundings. Some care is required to make sure the fruit you obtain is healthy, but the tasty apricot yield will convince you to expend some labor on these trees.

Apricots have lots of vitamin A and copper, which are rare vitamins to be found in fruits. They can also strengthen your heart and bones if eaten every day.

Source: Gardening Know How

CoconutsPalm trees swaying against the sky.

Coconut trees or more commonly palm trees, belong to family Arecaceae and are an important addition to any beach atmosphere. Although there are over 150 species spread in over 80 countries, coconut trees only grow in a tropical climate.

Coconuts as fruits are highly beneficial to humans. From their water and their flesh to oil and milk, coconuts are versatile. As foods, they provide us with a rich source of fatty acids, ascorbic acid, proteins, and other B vitamins. Taking them in abundance can also help in restoring damaged tissues in the body.

Having all this fascinating information about fruit trees can help you decide what you would like to plant in your backyard. A fruit tree is an investment that does not only provide shade and oxygen to the environment but also gives you and children plenty of healthy food to eat. It’s spring season, get planting!

Source: Owlcation

Plum

Plum tree

Plums are said to be some of the first fruits humans domesticated. They have many types, but the one commonly found is purple in color. It is differentiated from similar fruits like peaches because of the shoots possessing a terminal bud and non-clustered solitary side buds. If the weather is not humid enough, the fruit will stop growing past a certain point and fall from its tree while still in small, green form. Moreover, if the humidity is too much, plums need to be harvested as soon as possible, otherwise the fruit can develop brown rot, which is a fungal condition.

Some different plum species are damson, which has purple skin, greengage which is bright green in color, the Mirabelle which is tinted dark yellow, the Satsuma red plum, and the Victoria plum which has yellow flesh while its skin is red or mottled.

Plums consist of 87% water, some vitamin C, and plum juice can be made into plum wine.

AlmondAlmond fruit tree

Almond is a drupe fruit, which has an outer hull and a hard shell that contains seed. This makes almond a fruit and not a true nut, inside. The twigs are green when they are young; taking on a purplish hue on the sides exposed to sunlight, and then turning grey in another year. The best places to grow almonds are Mediterranean climates where there are warm, dry summers and mild, wet winters. The most favorable temperature for almond trees is between 59 and 86 °F.

Almonds are sold with or without their shell, and ‘shelling’ almonds refers to removing the shell to reveal the seed in order to make the fruit edible.

Some researchers have managed to develop hybridized variations of almond trees that are self-pollinated and have a high nut quality, in order to accelerate growth and improve worth.

Source: Wikipedia

Indian GooseberryIndian gooseberry tree

The leaves of the Indian gooseberry tree are simple, sub-sessile and narrowly spaces; they are light green in color and resemble pinnate leaves. The flowers in full bloom are tinged greenish-yellow, and the fruit is quite round, greenish-yellow, smooth and hard to the touch.

The berries ripen in autumn, when they are picked by hand as harvesters climb to high branches that bear fruits. The taste of this berry is sour and bitter, and the texture fibrous. In India, the berry is submerged in salt water and red chili powder is added to make it more appetizing.

Source: Wikipedia

CherryCherry trees

Cherry trees grow in temperate climates of high latitude; and like most trees of this nature, cherry trees need a cooling period each year to avoid dormancy and bear fruit. How much cold is required is dependent on the variety, but because of this condition, no species of Prunus can successfully grow in tropical places.

In the Middle East, Europe, North America, and Australia, there are many varieties of the cherry tree that are harvested and exported. The genus contains more than 40 members, some of which are Prunus apetala, Prunus avium (sweet cherry), Prunus campanulata (Taiwan cherry, Formosan cherry or bell-flowered cherry), Prunus canescens, Prunus caroliniana Aiton, amongst many others.

MulberryMulberry fruit

The Morus genus comprises of about 10–16 kinds of deciduous trees that are known as mulberries. Mulberries can grow in the wild and under cultivation in temperate climates

Southern Europe, the Middle East, northern Africa and the Indian subcontinent are all home to mulberries in their various forms, particularly black, red, and white.

The ripe fruit is used in pies, tarts, wines, and teas. The black mulberry and the red mulberry, native to southwest Asia and eastern North America respectively, have the strongest flavor that is often describes as ‘fireworks’ on the tongue.

PeachSucculent peaches on a tree

The Prunus persica is another deciduous tree native, hailing from the Northwestern Chinese region, where it was first and cultivated. The edible juicy fruit is named persica, referring to its extensive cultivation in Persia, modern-day Iran.

Peaches require a fairly specific type of climate to thrive: dry, continental or temperate, the reason for this is a chilling requirement that tropical climates cannot satisfy, except in certain high altitude places such as certain areas in Ecuador, Colombia, Ethiopia, India, and Pakistan.

FigRipe figs

In areas where it is grown commercially, fig is an important crop that can generate a lot of revenue. It is native to the Middle East and western Asia, where it has been cultivated for centuries. Figs are now grown globally, for its fruit and for its ornamental value.

Fig trees grow wild in areas that are dry and sunny, with fresh soil. It can also be found in rocky areas, at sea level up to 1,700 meters. It favors a comparatively light soil, and can easily grow in nutritionally poor conditions.

Source: Good Housekeeping

PersimmonPersimmon tree

From the genus Diospyros comes the edible fruit called Persimmon. The tree grows to be around 4.5 to 18 meters in height with a round top. It is not uncommon for the tree to sometimes be crooked or have a willowy look. The fruit ripens in late fall and can stay safe and edible on the tree come winter.

The color of the matured fruit ranges from shiny light yellow to dark red or orange depending on habitat and variety. The flesh is hard textured until it ripens and becomes soft, taking on a yellow, orange, or dark-brown hue.

PomegranateRipe pomegranate fruit trees

The pomegranate, or Punica granatum, is a fruit born in a deciduous shrub from family Lythraceae. The tree is quite small, growing to be about 5 and 10 meters high.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the tree bears fruit in fall and early spring, and in the Southern Hemisphere in mid spring season. Pomegranates have several culinary uses, such as baking, juice blends and smoothies, meal garnishes, and even alcoholic drinks can be made through fermentation.

Originally, the pomegranate tree came from modern-day Iran and northern India, ever since cultivated everywhere in the Mediterranean region. By the late 16th century, pomegranates had come to Spanish America, and in 1769 brought to California by Spanish settlers.

Grapefruit Grapefruit trees

Grapefruit is a citrus fruit known for its sour to somewhat bitter flavor. The citrus fruit is a hybrid that was created as an accidental cross between the sweet orange and pomelo, which are both native to Asia and were introduced to the west in the seventeenth century. It is frequently misidentified as one of its parent species, pomelo.

There are several varieties of grapefruit, but some Texas and Florida grapefruit species are Rio Star, Oro Blanco, Ruby Red, Pink, Thompson, White Marsh, Flame and Star Ruby.

AvocadoAvocado fruit trees

The avocado tree is most likely to have originated from South Central Mexico. The fruit is actually a large berry that has one big seed. The species is has adapted a lot due to selection pressure by humans to produce better with a thinner outer shell and therefore has many varieties.

Avocados need a climate that is warm with less wind, since high winds reduce humidity, dehydrating flowers, and harming the pollination process. When the weather becomes chilly, the fruit may drop prematurely, even though some species can tolerate low temperatures.

Jaboticaba fruitJaboticaba- the native Brazilian grape tree

The Plinia cauliflora, commonly known as the Brazilian grapetree, belongs to the family Myrtaceae, and is native to some states in Brazil. The fruit is well-known for its purplish-black color with white flesh, and it interestingly grows directly on the trunk.  The jaboticaba fruit can be enjoyed raw, or it can be made into culinary delights such as jellies, jams, juices and wine.

Even though the tree grows slowly, it is an evergreen and can grow as high as 15 meters if not pruned. The leaves have a salmon-pink tinge when young, and turn green in adulthood.

In order for the tree to grow well, a moist, rich, slightly acidic soil is required. It is quite adaptable and grows suitably even on different kinds of soils, as long as they are well taken care of.

LemonLemon tree with fresh fruit

Lemon is a species of a short evergreen tree, native to South Asia, and primarily north eastern regions of India. The tree’s spherical or ellipse-shaped yellow fruit is used in many cuisines and recipes in the world.

Its sour juice has both culinary and cleaning uses. The zest can also be used when cooking or baking. Lemon juice contains 5% to 6% citric acid, which gives it its flavor. This flavor is what makes lemon an important addition to beverages and foods such as mint lemonades and lemon meringue pies.

LimeGreen lime tree

A lime is a citrus fruit typically round and green in color. The size is about 3–6 centimeters in diameter. There are several species that are referred to as lime and belong to the same family, including the Key lime (Citrus aurantifolia), the Persian lime, kaffir lime, and the desert lime.

These fruit are similar to lemons in their abundance of vitamin C, and so they are often added to food to accentuate the flavors. Grown all year round, limes have various genetic origins and do not come from one monophyletic cluster.

GuavaGuava tree

In many tropical and subtropical regions, the guava is a commonly cultivated tropical fruit. The guava tree is a small, and native to Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean and northern South America.

Several related species may also be termed guavas, but they usually belong to other genera. India was the biggest cultivator of these fruit trees with 41% of the world total in 2014.

Source: Hunker.com

OliveHalf green and half black olives on a tree branch

Olives, also known as Olea europaea (that stands in for “European olive”) come from a small tree in the Mediterranean Basin. The fruit is grown in many places and is now considered naturally occurring in all countries of the Mediterranean. It is also grown in Argentina, Norfolk Island, California, Bermuda, and Saudi Arabia

The olive’s fruit, also called the olive, is of major agricultural importance in the Mediterranean region as the source of olive oil; it is one of the core ingredients in Mediterranean cuisine.

Source: Olive Tree Growers

Lychee

e lychee tree

Lychee is a tropical tree that comes from the Guangdong and Fujian provinces of China. Here, its cultivation is documented for a thousand years. The main producer of lychee fruit is China, then other countries in Southeast Asia, such as India and Nepal. The evergreen lychee tree grows small fruits, the outside of which is pinkish red, with a rough texture. The outer layer is inedible, while the sugary flesh is eaten in many different countries as dessert.

The seeds of the fruit contain a particular chemical that has been known to cause hypoglycemia in malnourished Indian and Vietnamese kids, who eagerly consume it.

DurianFresh durian fruits

The exotic Durian fruit is famous for its taste and very unusual and often unbearable smell. The unusual flavor and odor of the fruit have made many people express passionate views ranging from profound approval to intense dislike and even disgust.

Durian trees are quite large (25–50 meters in height), and the leaves are evergreen, have an elliptic shape and several centimeters long. Durian trees only produce fruits and flowers once a year, although the timing differs depending on the species, particular harvesting techniques, and geography.

Jackfruitjackfruit tree

The jackfruit (scientific name Artocarpus heterophyllus), is called the jack tree, and is a species related to the fig, mulberry, and breadfruit family. It is unclear where these fruits hail from, but most botanists consider its native areas to be Western provinces of India, or the Borneo rainforests.

The jackfruit tree is best grown in tropical lowlands, and the fruit is considered the largest grown on any tree. A fully-aged jackfruit tree can grow about 100 to 200 fruits in a single year.

CashewA cashew tree

The cashew tree is an evergreen tree that grows in tropical climates. It produces the cashew seed and the cashew apple, which grow together as one fruit. The tree can reach as high as 14 meters, but the dwarf varieties prove to be more profitable, and hence, are cultivated in abundance.

The species comes from Central America and the Caribbean Islands. The cashew apple is light reddish to yellow in color, and its pulp can be made into fruit or fermented into alcohol. The cashew nut is sold widely and exported to all corners of the world.

Having all this fascinating information about fruit trees can help you decide what you would like to plant in your backyard. A fruit tree is an investment that does not only provide shade and oxygen to the environment, but also gives you and children plenty of healthy food to eat.

It’s spring season, get planting!

Nectarine TreesNectarines hanging from a tree

Nectarines are the same species as peaches, Prunus persica, with the only difference that the outer skin of the former lack what we have come to know as peach fuzz.

Even though they usually grow in any warm climate, nectarines will grow better and faster if they are exposed to more sun. On the other hand, they can easily become dormant, or even die, in frosty weather. These trees prefer sandy loam soils but can usually grow quite well in other soils too.

Source: Chestnut Hill Tree Farm

Dwarf Fruit Trees

dwarf orange fruit tree

If you want your very own fruit tree but are constrained by space, dwarf fruit trees can be your choice of houseplant. A dwarf tree is a small cultivar of full sized fruit trees that can yield many mature fruits in a year without taking up the usual growing space occupied by trees. In fact, these tiny versions of trees can grow in containers 12-15 wide.

All they need to grow well is fertile potting, a good water drainage system, and plenty of sun exposure. One of the most famous varieties is the dwarf peach plant, aptly named the Prunus persica ‘Bonanza’ which bears fruit as early as within a year and has self-fertilizing properties.

Source: HGTV Outdoors

Columnar Fruit Trees

Apple columnar tree

Unlike regular trees, columnar trees grow upwards, not out. The best thing about them is that they consume so little horizontal space that they can be grown anywhere you wish, if sufficient conditions are fulfilled.

Not only is it extremely pleasing to the eye, it also enables passionate gardeners with little outdoor space to have the experience of growing a fruit tree under their belt.

The fruit from columnar trees is full sized, and just as delicious as any other variety. Fruits like cherries, plums, and peaches are also available in this variety; however, they may need to pruned and plucked at certain points to maintain the spiral structure as well as other fruits.

Source: Luv2Garden

Having all this fascinating information about fruit trees can help you decide what you would like to plant in your backyard. A fruit tree is an investment that does not only provide shade and oxygen to the environment, but also gives you and children plenty of healthy food to eat.

It’s spring season, get planting!









Add Comment