|Pomegranate - Punica granatum L.|
Pomegranate by Augustus Binu
Pomegranate in cross section
Pomegranate seeds with their fleshy outgrowth (aril)
New leaf growth
Distinguishing between the flower types: not so apparent at the bud stage or in open flowers
Pomegranate blossom before pollination
Pomegranate sepals and drying stamens after fertilization and petal fall
Pomegranate blossom and fruit developing
Pomegranate fruit and two flowers at different stages
Black Pomegranate of Taft, Iran
Pomegranate seeds dried
Pomegranate growth habit
Photo of Punica granatum 'Nana' at the Springs Preserve garden in Las Vegas, Nevada
Punica granatum tree in Maresha Israel in August. Fruit is clearly seen on the tree
A worker preparing fresh pomegranate juice from these pomegranate fruit. Photo taken at a market in Istanbul, Turkey
Woman selling pomegranates, Mysore, India
The pomegranate man while walking through the Shuk Hacarmel, Israel
Punica granatum L.
French: grenade; Spanish:granada (the fruit), granado (the plant); Dutch: granaatappel: German: granatapfel; Italian: melogranato, melograno granato, pomo granato, or pomo punico; Indonesia:gangsalan; Thailand: tab tim; Malaya: delima; Brazil: roma, romeira or romazeira; Guatemala: granad 4
Punica nana L., Punica multiflora hort
Native from Iran to the Himalayas in northern India 4
USDA hardiness zones
Eaten out of hand; juice; landscape specimen
6-12 ft (2-4 m)
Dense, bushy, deciduous shrub; suckers freely from base
Extremely long-lived, some specimens at Versailles known to have survived two centuries 4
Slender, somewhat thorny branches
Light annual pruning; remove sprouts and suckers as they appear
Glossy, dark green, oblong to oval, 2.5-3 cm (1-1.25 in.) long 3
Orange-red, 1.5-2.5 in. (4-6 cm); crinkled petals; numerous stamens; borne solitary or in small clusters 3
Brownish-yellow to purplish-red berries; 2-5 in. (5-12 cm); smooth, leathery skin; spherical, somewhat flattened; persistent calyx 3
Year round; produce fruit 3-4 years after planting; fruit ripens about 6 months after bloom 6
Nutrient Content pdf
The Pomegranate from the University of Florida pdf
Pomegranate from Julia Morton's book Fruits of Warm Climates
Propagation and Pruning
How to Care for the Pomegranate Tree: Video from Jene's Tropical ext. link
Pomegranates (Punica granatum) have been popular fruit throughout human history and are experiencing a surge in popularity at present due to the health benefits associated with their juice. Widely grown for their edible fruits, they are equally valuable as ornamental plants. While their precise origin is unknown, pomegranates are considered native from the near-Middle East to the Himalayas. The first plants were probably introduced into the southeastern United States by early Spanish settlers to their colony at St. Augustine, FL. Pomegranates have a long history of use in South Carolina. Plants are often found around old home sites and plantations, especially in the Midlands and Coastal Plain. They grow and flower well in most of SC, but tend to fruit poorly in our humid climate as compared to the warm, arid regions where they are particularly well adapted. 1
The pomegranate is a naturally bushy, multi-stemmed plant that tends to maintain its bushiness because of suckers routinely arising from the base. Plants grow to heights of ca. 10-12 feet and commercially are often trained to a single trunk or sometimes three stems . The plant is normally deciduous. New spring shoots tend to be thin and weepy with thorns. The leaves are shiny and dark green. The plant is essentially monoecious with two types of showy flowers produced on new growth each spring. Flowering may occur over several months with some flowers still being produced into late summer/early fall, but the major bloom period is the spring. 2
Fig. 25. A Pommegranate tree loaded with fruit, an orchard in Sde Ya'akov, Israel
Fig. 26. Château de Versailles orangerie grenadiers en fleurs, France
The Biology of Pomegranates from the Florida Pomegranate Association, Purdue University pdf 92 pages (large file)
A flower is either male or hermaphroditic (Fig. 8). The latter flower type is bell-shaped and self-fertile. Hermaphroditic flowers produce fruit.
Male flowers are more trumpet-shaped and do not set fruit. Flower color for many cultivars is orange-red to brilliant red and there are some, especially ornamental types, with “double” flowers (i.e., with extra petals) or some that are pink, white, or some combination of those colors and red. Pollination primarily by insects (bees) leads to fruit set and the development of the inferior ovary. 2
Fig. 8. Flower type, style lenght and ovary shape
The terms "seeds" and “aril” are often used interchangeably as if they defined the same thing which is not true. Technically speaking, the “seed” has two parts: the crunchy interior structure that is the part that contains the embryo and is sometimes eaten if it is not perceived to be too hard, and the juicy part or the aril. The aril is a fleshy outgrowth of the seed coat and provides the color of the juice.
The mature pomegranate fruit is large, usually 3 inches in diameter, and sometimes as large as 4 to 5 inches. Fruit generally mature in 5 to 8 months and often change from round to a slightly squared-out shape. The fruit of different cultivars are quite diverse in their color, taste, and certain other traits. Peel color ranges from a light yellow to “black” or very dark red/purple. The fruit is distinctive because it retains the calyx (petals + sepals) at one end of the fruit giving the fruit the appearance at maturity of having a small crown attached to it. Internally, the fruit consists of a series of chambers (locules) separated by a membranous septum. Inside each chamber are the seeds which each have a fleshy outgrowth (aril) that contains the edible juice. The seeds range in hardness from very hard (not edible) to soft (easily consumed). The color of the arils also ranges from a light, virtually white, color to very dark red or purple. The flavor of the juice can be inedibly tart to bland to sweet or sweet/tart depending on acidity. 2
Wonderful’ is grown commercially in California, having been exported as cuttings from Florida. ‘Purple Seed’ and ‘Spanish Ruby’ are popular dooryard cultivars. 3
Interactive Guide to Selecting Florida-Grown Pomegranates from the University of Florida Citrus Extension ext. link
Fruit and Seeds [Arils] of Florida Pomegranate Varieties from the University of Florida Citrus Extension ext. link
The fruits ripen 6 to 7 months after flowering. Growers generally consider the fruit ready for harvest if it makes a metallic sound when tapped. The fruit must be picked before over maturity when it tends to crack open if rained upon or under certain conditions of atmospheric humidity, dehydration by winds, or insufficient irrigation. Of course, one might assume that ultimate splitting is the natural means of seed release and dispersal. 4
Because the fruit does not ripen after being picked, harvest it only after it has reached full maturity. 6
The pomegranate is both self-pollinated and cross-pollinated by insects. There is very little wind dispersal of pollen. Self-pollination of bagged flowers has resulted in 45% fruit set. Cross-pollination has increased yield to 68%. In hermaphrodite flowers, 6 to 20% of the pollen may be infertile; in male, 14 to 28%. The size and fertility of the pollen vary with the cultivar and season. 4
Pomegranates root readily from hardwood cuttings taken in winter during pruning. Although the size of the wood does not seem to affect rooting, pencil-sized cuttings are easiest to work with. Cut sections about 6 to 14 inches long, dip them in rooting hormone, and stick them upright in containers of well-drained potting soil. In spring after the cuttings begin growing, transplant them into gallon containers and allow them to continue growing for 4 to 6 weeks before planting them in the ground. Because the plants have performed well on their own roots, rootstocks have not been needed. 6
Propagation Information from the University of Florida Citrus Extension ext. link
Pomegranates produce best on deep, heavy loams, but are adapted to many soil types from pure sand to heavy clay. Yields are usually low on sands, while fruit color is poor on clays. Growth on alkaline soils is poor. Optimum growth is associated with deep, fairly heavy, moist soils in the pH range of 5.5-7.0. 3
Initially, the plants are cut back to 24 to 30 in (60-75 cm) in height and after they branch out the lower branches are pruned to provide a clear main stem. Inasmuch as fruits are borne only at the tips of new growth, it is recommended that, for the first 3 years, the branches be judiciously shortened annually to encourage the maximum number of new shoots on all sides, prevent straggly development, and achieve a strong, well-framed plant. After the 3rd year, only suckers and dead branches are removed. 4
Pomegranate Nutrition and Fertilization from the University of Florida pdf 9 pages
Thoroughly water the plants at planting and again 2 to 4 weeks after planting. Begin a once-a-week schedule when the plants leaf out. Once the trees are established, water them about every 7 to 10 days. 6
The most destructive disease observed on trees in Florida causes a leaf blotch and fruit spot. Leaf symptoms include small, circular to angular, dark, reddish-brown to black areas, 0.25 in. in diameter. Infected leaves are pale green and fall prematurely. Fruit symptoms are small, conspicuous, dark brown spots, initially circular, becoming irregular. At least three sprays per year of neutral copper fungicide gives desired control. Scale mites occasionally attack the plant, but these do little damage. Sulfur dust applied in early June offers good mite control. Scale insects can be controlled by an application of 3% oil spray during the winter when the leaves are not present. 3
Fig. 27. Cercospora fungus on pomegranate leaf
Fig. 28. Cercospora fungus on pomegranate leaves
Diseases of Pomegranate in Florida from the University of Florida pdf 5 pages
Pomegranates are commonly eaten fresh. Some of the new varieties have soft seeds that can be eaten with the fleshy pulp. The fruit juice can be made into a beverage or syrup and can be blended with other juices. An emerging trend in the commercial industry is to sell bags of arils to be eaten fresh. 6
The pomegranate has an exceptionally long shelf life, especially when refrigerated. 7
Fig. 29. A bowl of ''ash-e anar'' (Persian pomegranate soup)
Fig. 30. Leftover roast beef rib-eye salad with Pomegranate vinaigrette
Fig. 31. Pomegranate sour (Nar ekşisi in Turkish) and the cheaper "nar ekşili sos" (sauce with pomegranate sour) on supermarket shelves in Ankara
Fig. 32. Pomegranate Molasses on Pancakes
Fig. 33. Pomegranate Molasses (Turkey)
Fig. 34. "Narsharab" - pomegranate sauce (condiment of Turkey)
Fig. 35. Anar Ka shake, pomegranate shake (Pakistan)
Fig. 36. Taza anar Ka Juice. Pomegranate juice can easily be extrated from pomegranate seed, Separate seeds , take a muslim cloth folded into two layers, press againt a large plate , fresh juice with eye appealing colors will squeze out from seeds. Normaly 1 large pomegranate gives 1 glass of juice.
Fig. 37. Infused pomegranate water
Selecting and Storing Pomegranates from the University of Florida, Volusia County Extension
How to Eat a Pomegranate
Medicinal Uses **
There is a significant body of research indicating that pomegranates boost heart health. Studies reveal that the diverse and rich antioxidant content decreases inflammation and thickening of the artery walls. Pomegranate juice also seems to prevent blood cells called platelets from clumping together, reducing the buildup of cholesterol and plaque. Other research indicates reduction of blood cholesterol and blood pressure when pomegranate juice is included in a well-balanced diet. Scientists attribute heart healthy benefits to polyphenols, including anthocyanins, which are plant pigments that give the pomegranate its attractive red hue. Anthocyanins also add nutritional value to other berries such as strawberries and blueberries. Although a pomegranate has no resemblance to these other fruits the edible portion is a berry. 5
Pomegranate Health Benefits from the University of Florida
All parts of the tree have been utilized as sources of tannin for curing leather. The trunk bark contains 10 to 25% tannin and was formerly important in the production of Morocco leather. The root bark has a 28% tannin content, the leaves, 11%, and the fruit rind as much as 26%. The latter is a by-product of the "anardana" industry. Both the rind and the flowers yield dyes for textiles. Ink can be made by steeping the leaves in vinegar. In Japan, an insecticide is derived from the bark. The pale-yellow wood is very hard and, while available only in small dimensions, is used for walking-sticks and in woodcrafts. 4
The juice with a very high antioxidant benefit to fight many diseases is bright red in color and is used in the preparation of many drinks with a promise of health benefits. The pomegranate juice is called, Grenadine.
The generic term, Punica, was the Roman name for Carthage from whence the best pomegranates came to Italy. 4
Fig. 41. Stamp of Romania. Punika Granatum
Fig. 42. Pomegranate Festival is an annual cultural festival that is held in Goychay, Azerbaijan. Women are making lavash bread
Fig. 43. Punica Granatum. China Kashgar (Xinjiang province)
Fig. 44. Arms of Kingdom of Granada (Crown of Castile)- Coat of Arms of Spain Template
Pomegranates as a Dooryard and Small Farm Entreprise from the University of Florida Citrus Research and Education Center pdf 34 pages
Pomegranate from Clemson University pdf
Pomegranate from Just Fruits and Exotics Nursery
The pomegranate by R. W. Hodgson from the Agricultural Experiment Station in Berkeley, Cal. 1917 pdf 32 pages (large file)
Characterization of Attributes Related to Fruit Size in Pomegranate from HortScience Vol. 46(6) June 2011 pdf 5 pages
The Pomegranate: A New Look at the Fruit of Paradise HortScience Vol. 42 no. 5 1088-1092, Aug. 2007 pdf 5 pages
Pomegranate Production from the University of Georgia University Extension pdf 12 pages
Pomegranate Orchard Design and Site Preparation from the University of Florida pdf
Pomegranate from Aggie Horticulture®, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension pdf 6 pages
Pomegranate Botanical Art
California Pomegranate Council ext. link
UF/IFAS Citrus Extension: Pomegranates for Now ext. link
The Pomegranate from the National Tropical Botanical Garden ext. link
List of Growers and Vendors
1 Tanner, Cory. "Pomegranate." clemson.edu. Horticulture Extension Department, Clemson University. May 2009. Web. 21 June 2014.
2 Castle, Bill. "Pomegranates for Now." crec.ifas.ufl.edu. Horticultural Sciences Department, IFAS, University of Florida. Last Modified May 07 2013. Web. 8 Aug. 2014.
3 Sheets, M.D. Du Bois, M.L. and Williamson, J.G. "The Pomegranate." edis.ifas.ufl.edu. This document is HS44, one of a series of the Horticultural Sciences Department, UF/IFAS Extension. Publication date April 1994. Revised Apr. 2004, Oct. 2012, July 2013 and Mar. 2015. Web. 24 Feb. 2017.
4 Morton, J. "Pomegranate." hort.purdue.edu. p. 352–355. In: Fruits of warm climates. 1987. Web. 613 June 2014.
Jill. "Pomegranate Health Benefits." crec.ifas.ufl.edu.
Family and Consumer Sciences, University of Florida/IFAS Volusia County
Extension. Web. 8 Aug. 2014.
1 Binu, Augustus. Pomegranate. 2014. wikipedia.org.
BY-SA 3.0). Web. 15 Dec. 2016.
Fig. 24 יעקב Punica granatum tree in Maresha Israel in August. Fruit is clearly seen on the tree. 2007. commons.wikimedia.org. Web. 28 July 2015.
Fig. 27,28 Cercospora fungus. 2008. Florida Division of Plant Industry Archive, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. bugwood.org. Web. 13 June 2014.
Fig. 29 Sucher, Danielle E. A bowl of ''ash-e anar'' (Persian pomegranate soup). 2007. commons.wikimedia.org. Web. 28 July 2015.
Fig. 31 E4024. Pomegranate sour (Nar ekşisi in Turkish) and the cheaper "nar ekşili sos" (sauce with pomegranate sour) on supermarket shelves in Ankara. 2015. commons.wikimedia.org. Under (CC BY-SA 4.0). Web. 28 July 2015.
Fig. 35 Miansari66. Anar ka shake, pomegranate shake. 2010. commons.wikimedia.org. Public Domain. Web. 23 Feb. 2017.
Fig. 36 Miansari66. Taza anar Ka Juice, Pomegranate juice. 2009. commons.wikimedia.org. Public Domain. Web. 23 Feb. 2017.
Fig. 37 Nalawlescape. Infused pomegranate water. N.d. pixabay.com. Public domain. Web. 24 Feb. 2017.
Fig. 38 May, J. H. A worker preparing fresh pomegranate juice from these pomegranate fruit. Photo taken at a market in Istanbul, Turkey. 2006. commons.wikimedia.org. Web. 13 June 2014.
Fig. 41 Butko, Andrew. Stamp of Romania. Punika Granatum. 1971. commons.wikimedia.org. Public Domain. Web. 23 Feb. 2017.
Fig. 42 Moonsun1981. Pomegranate Festival is an annual cultural festival that is held in Goychay, Azerbaijan. Women are making lavash bread. 2011. commons.wikimedia.org. Under (CC BY-SA 3.0). Web. 23 Feb. 2017.
Assessment of Non-native Plants in Florida's Natural Areas
** Information provided is not intended to be used as a guide for treatment of medical conditions.
Published 13 June 2014 LR. Last update 24 Feb. 2017 LR