Artocarpus lacucha, also known as monkey fruit, or Monkey Jack fruit is a tropical evergreen tree species of the Moraceae family. The plant is distributed throughout the Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia and is available in some Asian countries like Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. The tree is valued for its wood; its fruit is edible and is believed to have medicinal value. Some of the popular common names of the plants are Monkey jack, Monkey jack tree, Monkey fruit and Monkey jack fruit. The generic name comes from the Greek words ‘artos’ which means bread and ‘karpos’ means fruit while the species name is derived from the fruit’s common name in India. Fruits are highly nutritious and are an important food item in the human diet. This fruits consists of vitamins and most of the vitamins excellent source of antioxidant which are vitamin C and beta-carotene.
The plant is medium to large deciduous tree that grows about 10-15 m tall. The plant is found growing in lowland hill forests, open country, and sometimes villages, up to 300 m altitude.
It occurs locally along Mandai Road, in Nee Soon Swamp Forest, and Pulau Ubin. It prefers a deep, well-drained soil and grows well in deep permeable soils with a good supply of moisture. The bark is grey and the slash is deep red with milky latex. Branchlets are 3-6 mm thick, densely covered with stiff pale brown to yellow velvety hairs. This tree is mentioned in the Arthashastra. Monkey fruit plants in Keralais now available in our farms.