Tropical Soda Apple
Tropical soda apple is an invasive plant native to South America that causes a lot of damage in Florida every year. It’s common to ranches in South Florida but can be found in many different habitats throughout the state. The immature fruit of the tropical soda apple is small and green, with white mottling, much like a small watermelon. The ripe fruit is yellow. The plant produces fruit containing hundreds of seeds that are easily spread by animals. Tropical soda apple plants grow up to six feet tall, with large thorns everywhere. The plant multiplies rapidly in dry conditions and the seeds can survive for years in soil until rain prompts germination. In areas with just a few plants, hand-pulling or spraying individual plants before they fruit should eliminate the problem.
- Natural Area Weeds: Invasive Solanum spp. in Florida
- Tropical Soda Apple: Biology, Ecology, and Management of a Noxious Weed in Florida