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Here are some fun fruit facts to include when doing a study on fruit, food, or cooking. Iíve listed the information in both American standard and Metric so you could even use this with your math studies.
Apples and Pears
Cultivated apples all descend from wild crab apples that grow in Northern Europe, Asia, and America.
Apple trees can grow up to 40 feet (12 meters) high.
The U.S. crop of apples is about 4,427,000 metric tons per year.
Pear trees can grow to 60 feet (18 meters) and may be as old as 300 years.
Pear wood is hard and can be used to make furniture.
Apple wood is soft and is sometimes used to make decorative in-lays on wooden furniture.
Oranges, Lemons, and Limes
Orange trees first grew in China.
Oranges were taken to Europe by Arab traders more than 1,000 years ago.
A medium-sized orange contains the amount of vitamin C that a healthy adult should eat daily.
Lemons, oranges, and limes are all citrus fruits. Their juices contain citric acid.
Grated lemon peel is called zest an is sometimes used as flavoring in baking and in candies.
British sailors were given lime juice to keep them from getting a disease called scurvy (malnutrition illness caused by a lack of certain vitamins). British sailors were often called "Limeys" because of this.
People in the tropics have eaten bananas for thousands of years.
There are more than 100 varieties of bananas, some even have red skin.
Bananas have high levels of sugars, starch, and vitamins A and C.
Banana ash is used to make soap.
The name pine-apple was the original name for a pine cone (grows on pine trees). Because the fruit pineapple looked like a huge pine cone, it too was called a pine-apple.
Pineapples contain an enzyme that is used in blood tests.
Fibers in pineapple leaves are used to make rope and a cloth called pino.
Pineapples are related to rainforest plants called bromeliads.
Strawberries and Raspberries
The strawberry probably got its name originally from the Anglo-Saxon word streawberige, which means "spreading berry".
Most raspberries are red, but some varieties are white, yellow, or black.
Raspberries may have been named after a 16th century French wine called raspis.
Raspberries used to be called hindberries.
Peaches, Apricots, Cherries, and Plums
Peaches and apricots and rich in vitamins A and C.
Apricots were first grown in China more than 4,000 years ago.
The wild plum of Northern Europe is the sloe. Sloes have small, hard, bitter fruit. The sloe fruit is used to make a type of alcoholic beverage called sloe gin.
Round cherry pits were used to play games such as marbles.
Almonds are the nutlike seeds from a fruit that looks like a green apricot.
Blackberry juice was used to dye cloth navy blue and indigo.
Black currants are rich in vitamins C and B.
Currant juice can be used to soothe sore throats and colds.
Pemmican is a Native American cake of dried meat flavored with dried currants. (For a modern recipe see Snack in the Saddle Again).
The gooseberry is called the "mackeral currant" in French because gooseberry sauce is served with mackerel, a type of fish.
Watermelons are related to climbing plants that probably came from tropical Africa.
Melons can grow to 40 pounds (18 kilograms) or more.
Grapes were grown by the ancient Egyptians more than 6,000 years ago.
Passion fruits were first grown in Brazil.
Kiwi plants were first grown in China.
Kiwis were once known as Chinese gooseberries.
Some Mediterranean Fruits
Olive trees can live for more than 1,500 years.
Figs were one of the fruit most often eaten by the ancient Greeks and Romans.
Soft dates contain saccharine, which is sometimes used as a sugar substitute for diabetics.