|Branch with leaves and fruit|
|Current range of native and naturalized A. cherimola|
Annona pubescens Salisb.
The cherimoya (Annona cherimola), also spelled chirimoya and called chirimuya by the Inca people, is a species of edible fruit-bearing plant in the genus Annona, from the family Annonaceae, which includes the closely related sweetsop and soursop. The plant has long been believed to be native to Ecuador and Peru, with cultivation practiced in the Andes and Central America, although a recent hypothesis postulates Central America as the origin instead, because many of the plant's wild relatives occur in this area.
Cherimoya is grown in tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world including Central America, eastern South America, Southern California, South Asia, Australia, the Mediterranean region and North Africa. American writer Mark Twain called the cherimoya "the most delicious fruit known to men". The creamy texture of the flesh gives the fruit its secondary name, the custard apple.
Borrowed from Spanish chirimoya, from Quechua chirimuya.
- IPA(key): /tʃɛɹɪˈmɔɪ.ə/
cherimoya (plural cherimoyas)
- A subtropical tree, Annona cherimola, native to mountainous areas of South America.
- A conical fruit with white flesh from that tree.
- custard apple
- Jamaican apple