Jackfruit is a huge tree that grows to as high as 30 meters; larger than mango, breadfruit, etc. It grows best in tropical humid, and rainy climates but hardly survives cold and frosty conditions.
It is believed to be native to the Southwestern rain-forests of Southern India. Today, it is widely cultivated in the tropical regions of the Indian subcontinent, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brazil for its fruit, seeds, and wood.
|Jackfruit (Artocarpus heterophyllus).||Huge jackfruit tree.|
In a season, each tree bears as many as 250 large fruits, supposed to be the biggest tree-borne fruits in the world. The fruit varies
widely in size, weighs from 3 to 30 kg, and has an oblong or round shape, measuring 10 cm to 60 cm in length, 25 to 75 cm in diameter. While
unripe fruits are green, they turn light brown and spread a strong sweet, fruity smell once ripe.
As in the durian fruit, the outer surface of the jackfruit is also covered by blunt spikes which become soft as the fruit ripens.
Its interior consists of eye-catching orange-yellow color edible bulbs. Each bulb consists of sweet flesh (sheath) that encloses a smooth, oval, light-brown seed. There may be as many as 50 to 500 edible bulbs embedded in a single fruit interspersed in-between thin bands of fibers.
Jackfruit seed encased inside a thin, transparent outer cover. It largely composes of starch and protein. Seed measures about 2 to 4 cm in length, and 1 to 3 cm in thickness.
Almost all the parts of the tree secrete white sticky latex-like milk (juice) upon infliction of injury.