Erakina

Illawarra Plum – Erakina

Published Date : February 21, 2022

Illawarra Plum is a juicy, pulpy fruit having a grape sort of texture liked by those having a sweet tooth. It is also known as Brown pine, Plum pine, Daalgaal, or Goongum. The fruit is grown in Australia, especially on the eastern coast of the country like Queensland and New South Wales.

Illawarra plum possesses a mild pine flavor that is sweet in taste and the sweetness enhances while cooking.  We know Illawarra plum as an aboriginal fruit having aboriginal names like Daalgaal, Goongum, and Gidneywallum.

The aboriginal brown pine is also popular among European settlers in Australia. So it is used as a sweet dish for the majority of Australians.

 Besides the humans, Illawarra plum enjoys patronage with the birds, bees, and other insects. The fruit has high nutritional value having dietary fibers, proteins, and calcium. Illawarra plum has low-fat components making it a sweet dish even for diabetic patients. 

Illawarra Plum

Illawarra Plum is also known as Brown pine

Scientific classification of Illawara Plum

Kingdom: Plantae

Clade: Tracheophytes

Division: Pinophyta

Class: Pinopsida

Order: Pinales

Family: Podocarpaceae

Genus: Podocarpus

Species: P. elatus

Scientific name: Podocarpus elatus 

Physiology of Illawara Plum

Illawarra plum trees can grow quite tall about 40 meters in height. The average size of the tree varies from 30 meters to 36 meters. But it takes time to attain such a height. The Brown pine tree can either be a male or female tree. The female tree bears fruit while the male tree fertilizes. A typical farmer grows at least three plants of Illawara plum to get the desired outcome. 

Fruits of Illawara Plum

The fruits of Illawara Plum have two textures. The seed of the fruit is on its outside. The hard seed on the outer part of the fruit paves the way to the fleshy part of the brown pine. It can be cooked or eaten raw. The fruit can also be used to prepare sorts of jams, spirits, or sweet dishes.

Illawarra plum fruits resemble the size of a big grape. The average diameter of the fruit is 2.50 centimeters. The fruit can be best used as it ripens between March and July. The Illawarra plum fruits can be plucked from the trees or collected as it falls off the tree after ripening. 

 Illawarra PlumFruits on the Illawarra Plumtree

Nutritional aspects of Illawara Plum

Illawarra Plum or Brown Pine is known across the table for its high content nutrients as follows:

  • Vitamin C – 18%
  • Carbohydrates – 13%
  • Iron – 6%
  • Dietary fiber – 4%
  • Protein – 2%

Besides the above components, the fruit contains negligible fat or saturated fat. Even the sugar component is quite low in Illawara plum. So it is suitable for consumption even for patients suffering from diabetes and obesity. 

 Illawarra Plum beverage

Alcohol made of Illawarra Plum

Uses of Illawara Plum

The Illawarra plum tree is quite useful. The timber of the tree has various uses like making furniture, boat planks, carpentry, and lining. The tree is also used for condiments. The presence of Illawara plum enhances the aesthetics of your garden. Thus the tree is widely used as an ornamental tree. 

Besides other things, the Illawarra plum has various health benefits. The fruits owing to high levels of nutrients can treat deadly diseases like cancer. Consuming Brown pine enhances the histone deacetylase activities. The phenomenon tends to reduce the propagation of the cells of colon cancer. 

The spirit of Illawara plum is used to prepare alcoholic beverages. The ripe fruits of Brown pine are used to prepare alcohol. The amazing part is that the preparation does not add any supplementary sugar unlike other sorts of alcoholic beverages. 

Illawarra Plum fruitsfruits of Illawarra plum can treat cancer

Cultivation of Illawara Plum

Illawarra plum grows easily and requires less maintenance. To grow the tree at its full bloom, keep it under sunlight and provide shade as well. The soil of the tree should be rich, non-alkaline, and moist to support a suitable drainage system. 

Bottom Line on Illawara Plum

Illawarra plum is a grape-like fruit that has immense usefulness. It is native to Australia and is considered highly by the aboriginals. The fruits of Illawara plum are high in nutrients and can be used to treat colon cancer. Brown pine is also used as an ornamental tree in your garden and the ripe fruits have alcoholic usage.  

By Shuvendu Modak

10.02.22

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