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Pomegranate Seasonal Fruits
Pomegranate plant belongs to the family Punicaceae, botanically known as Punica granatum L. It is a fruit of its own taste and peculiar characteristics. Hence it has become most popular crop in the Central & Southern India. The freshly harvested mature fruit is light pink to pink coloured, mildly flavoured and sweet with refreshing and agreeable taste. The color in pomegranate fruit is due to water soluble pigments known as anthocyanins.
The pleasures of pomegranates
The fruit originally came from Persia and Afghanistan, and even today the small squat shrub-like tree can often be seen growing wild from the Persian Gulf to the Hindu Kush. A feature of the tree is that it also thrives in areas with highly irregular rainfall. The fruit will keep for up to six months, thanks to its leathery skin.

The tree adapts quickly to local conditions. In colder climates it is deciduous, in warmer regions it becomes an evergreen. And an other special characteristic is that prolonged high temperatures during the ripening phase make the fruit flesh particularly sweet. You can tell when the fruit is fully ripe by its slightly cracked skin.

Maharashtra state statistics for 1992 show a crop area of 9,000 hectares (22,000 acres), the highest in the country. But because the tree will grow almost anywhere, the true acreage is probably much higher. Though the southwest state of Karnataka has a smaller planted area (4,650 ha (11,490 acres)), production is one-third higher at 109,763 tonnes. Government figures for Maharashtra document substantial new planting, which are only gradually coming into bearing. The tree flowers up to three times a year, according to the climate; once in spring in north India, all year round in central and south India. Maharashtra boasts three flowering periods (bahar); the rainy season, winter and summer.

As in many other fruit, the only pomegranate varieties known are those which have either been grown in the same place for a long time or which are the result of cross breeding.