Punica granatum

by Jessica Christianson
Plant Sciences 211, NDSU, Fall 2011

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The pomegranate is a deciduous plant usually growing between 12 and 16 feet tall but could grow up to 40 feet in height. The leaves of the pomegranate are opposite or sub-opposite, glossy, and oblong. They are 3–7 cm long and 2 cm wide. The flowers are usually bright red but may also be white or pink and are 3 cm in diameter with four to five petals. The fruit is a berry and is between 5 and 12 cm in diameter with a rounded hexagonal shape. The pomegranate usually has a thick reddish skin but can range from yellow to purple and can have around 600 seeds. Each seed is surrounded by a sweet edible pulp called aril, and can range in color from white to deep red or purple. The seeds are embedded in a white, spongy, bitter pulp. Some of the fruitless varieties are grown for their flowers alone.