Wampee (Clausena lansium)
Wampee is native to Southern China and Vietnam. It is an introduced crop in the Philippines and other South-East Asian countries. Breeding programs focus on the crop’s potential fro canning and pharmaceutical purposes.
The ornamental-looking tree reaches 12 m in height with a trunk diameter of 40 cm. Branches are usually low. The tree does not shed off leaves during the year. The leaves are glossy dark green and spirally arranged. The fragrant flowers are white to yellow green and occur in clusters. The somewhat round fruits measure 2.5 cm wide and are produced in clusters. Fruits are thin-skinned and brownish-yellow, often one to two seeded but sometimes contain up to six small seeds. The fruit has jelly-like pulp which is sometimes sweet or sour.
There are eight cultivars grown in China. Two outstanding cultivars are ‘Chi-Hsin’ and ‘Yuan Chung’. In Florida, productive and sweet-fruited selections have been made.
The ripe fruit is eaten fresh or made into pies and jellies. The sour, green fruits is also processed into jelly.
The juice can be fermented with sugar and processed into wine.
As a folk medicine, the ripe fruit has a cooling effect on the stomach and is used to eliminate worms in humans. The dried green fruit and sliced roots are used as herbal medicine to remedy bronchitis. The concentrate derived from boiling the leaves in water is used to wash the hair to treat dandruff and minimize graying of hair.
Soil and Climatic requirements
The wampee requires a subtropical to tropical climate. It can survive short cold weather at -2 degrees Celsius but succumbs at -6 degrees Celsius. It thrives well in rich loam and well-drained soils.
Propagation. The tree can be propagated through seeds, cuttings, marcotting, ang grafting.
Pruning. Prune occasionally to avoid overcrowding of the branches.
Pests and disease. No serious pests and diseases are known to affect production.
Harvesting and postharvest handling
Plants grown from seeds start bearing fruits, five to eight years from planting out in the field. Vegetatively propagated plants bear fruits earlier.
A mature tree produces up to 45 kgs of fruits per season.
Source: PROSEA leaflet no. 25