June 30, 2009

Bell Guava (Jambu Air)

Bell guava is a common kampung fruit. As kids my friends and I loved to climb up the small trees and plucked them. I remember most homes had one or two trees of the bell guava. We loved to see the pinkness of the fruits hanging on the trees. The best time to eat them was around Christmas. My grandfather had a good bell guava tree which gave all of us a lot of joy . Each time we visited him we would be given plenty to eat.

Today due to climatic changes the fruit seasons have been scrambled. So guavas of different seem to be available throughout the year! Furthermore new varieties which fruit more often have been developed to cater for the world market! Fruits which only could be harvest once a year can now be harvested twice or even thrice a year!!

Nowadays we seldom get the old variety from the kampung. Many of the old trees have been chopped down to make way for road widening or other crops.

As years go by the traditional fruit gets pushed to the side when better breeds arrive from overseas. Local breeds are wormy very often and smaller. They sell at 3 ringgit per kg. Big varieties from Taiwan (or locally grown Taiwan breeds) see at RM12 per kg. My children love the bell guava and would anytime buy the older variety.

So even though our kampoung varieties pale in comparison there are still many loyal customers amongst us. Loyalty is a characteristic which is premium nowadays.

These are photos of bell guava in my friend's garden.


杨 善 SUN YONG said...

Pls send me u email.

Frank Juhas said...

I do not know where did you get the name "bell guava". What I see is Jambu madu or in English Semarang water apple.(Syzygium samarangense (Blume) Merr..& L.M.Perry)
They are indeed belong to the family Myrtaceae
but the Guava belongs to the Subfamily:Myrtoideae, Tribe:Myrteae
and the Jambu belongs to the same Subfamily but to the Tribe:Syzygieae.


Anonymous said...

Locals call it "Jambu Ayer(now spelt Air)" or "water guava".
The local manglish market name is "bell apple"
Arthur Lee

Sibu Tales : Making Bah Gui from Scratch

The pioneering families of Sibu Foochows continued to practise the  adoption of girls from poor families who become their maids (slaves). ...