Nephelium lappaceum Linn. Sapindaceae. Rambutan. Rampostan.
Malay Archipelago, where it is found in the greatest abundance but does not appear to be cultivated. This tree yields the well-known and favorite rambutan fruit which in appearance very much resembles a chestnut with the husk on and, like the chestnut, is covered with small points which are soft and of a deep red color. Under this skin is the fruit, and within the fruit a stone; the eatable part thereof is small in quantity, but it perhaps is more agreeable than any other in the whole vegetable kingdom.
Nephelium litchi Cambess. Lichi.
China, Cambodia and the Philippines. This tree furnishes one of the most common fruits of China. The Chinese recognize some 15 or 20 varieties, but Williams says there are only two or three which are distinctly marked. It has been cultivated for ages in that country and furnishes a large amount of food to the people, a single tree often producing four bushels of fruit. It is now cultivated in Bengal and the West Indies. In Trinidad, says Pnstoe, the fruit is of the consistence and flavor of a high class Muscat grape and is invariably relished as delicious by all. The most common variety, says A. Smith, is nearly round, about an inch and a half in diameter, with a thin, brittle shell of red color covered all over with rough, wartlike protuberances; others are larger and heart-shaped. When fresh, they are filled with a white, almost transparent, sweet, jelly-like pulp, surrounding a rather large, shining, brown seed; after they have been gathered some time, the pulp shrivels and turns black, and the fruit then bears some resemblance to a prune.
Nephelium longana Cambess. Longan.
East Indies, Burma and southern China, where it is much cultivated for its fruits, which are sold in the Chinese markets. It is also grown in Bengal. The longan is a smaller fruit than the lichi, varying from half an inch to an inch in diameter and is quite round, with a nearly smooth, brittle skin of a yellowish-brown color. It contains a similar semi-transparent pulp of an agreeable, sweet or subacid flavor.
Nephelium rimosum G. Don.
Malay Archipelago. This species furnishes a fruit which is eaten.