Apricot (Prunus armeniaca, or “Armenian plum” in Latin, a synonym – Armeniaca vulgaris) – a fruit tree, a native of Armenia and China, has spread to Europe and the Caucasus. Apricot is in the same class with the plum in the subgenus Prunus genus Prunus.
Apricot – a small or medium-sized tree with a dense spreading crown of 8-12 meters high. Its leaves are shaped like a heart, with sharp edges and approximately 8 cm long and 3-4 cm wide. Its flowers are white and pink. The fruits appear like fruit of peach or nectarine, with a color ranging from yellow to orange and sometimes red hue. Its surface is smooth and almost bald. Apricot – stone fruits (drupes), so called because a single seed is often called “bone”.
The name comes from the words “apricock” and “abrecox”, through the French «abricot», with the Spanish «albaricoque», which was an adaptation of the Arabic «al-burquk», taken from the Latin »praecoquus», earlier, possibly referring to the fruit maturing much earlier in the summer than plums. However, in Argentina and Chile word for apricot – “damasco”, which probably indicates that the Spanish settlers Argentine fruits were associated with Damascus in Syria.
Apricot is thought to have originated in northeastern China near the Russian border. In Armenia, the apricot has been known since ancient times, as well as growing in Armenia. Roman general Lakallas (106-57 BC) even export a little trees – cherry, white cherry and apricot Julian from Armenia to Europe. While English settlers brought the apricot to the English colonies in the New World, the majority of modern American production of apricots are grown from seedlings, which was brought to the west coast by Spanish missionaries. Almost all US production is in California, with some orchards in Washington and Utah. Turkey – one of the leading manufacturers of apricot. In Armenia apricots are grown in the valley of Ararat.
Although often referred to as a “subtropical” fruit, apricot is actually native to the area with cold winters. Wood bit more hardy than the peach, allowing winter temperatures are low as -30 ° C or lower. The limiting factor in apricot culture – a spring frosts. They tend to the flowers bloom very early in the period of the vernal equinox even in northern locations like the Great Lakes region. Spring frost often kills the flowers. The trees do need some winter cold (even minimal). Grow properly and fruit apricots in the Mediterranean climate, since spring frosts are less severe, but it is a bit chilly winter weather, allowing the tree to fall into hibernation. The dry climate of these areas is the best for a good ripening. Hybridisation with the closely related Prunus sibirica (Siberian Apricot; hardy to temperatures of -50 ° C, but less acceptable fruit) offers options for breeding more cold-resistant plants.
Apricot cultivars often grafted onto rootstocks of peach or plum. Sharing existing apricot plant provides the fruit characteristics such as flavor, size, etc., but the rootstock provides the growth characteristics of plants.
Many apricots are also cultivated in Australia, particularly in South Australia where they are usually grown in an area known as the Riverland and in a small town called Mapilonga lowland Murray. Besides South Australia apricots are also grown, particularly in Tasmania and western Victoria and south-western New South Wales, but they are less common than in South Australia.
Apricots are also grown in Egypt, where they are among the common fruit known there. The season in which apricot can be found on the market in Egypt is very short. There is even an Egyptian proverb that says “Fel meshmesh” (“in apricot”), which is used to refer to something that can not happen because the apricot disappears from the market in Egypt shortly after he appears there. Egyptians usually dry apricot and sweeten it to make a drink called “amar el deen”.
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