The tribal people of Cebu island in Philippines used to grow a type of fruit trees to prevent soil erosion. The roots of the tree were capable to keep together different layers of soil. As the fruit of the tree was covered with soft fur, it was called Velvet Apple. It was also known as Mabolo.
The outer portion of the fruit smells like cat droppings or spoiled cheese, but its flesh inside has a pleasant fragrance. The tree is suitable for the climate in Kerala and can be planted for preventing soil erosion in hillsides.
Mabolo has two varieties, seeded and seedless. The seeded one has limited flesh as its seed is very large. So, it is ideal to grow the seedless variety. The tree grows in sea level and at an altitude of 2400 feet.
Highly immune, Mabolo is rarely affected by pests and diseases. The tree grows upto 4-6 metres in two years and blooms in 4 years. The fruit peel is reddish brown in colour and its flesh is cream or pink. The fruit can be exported and it fetches attractive price in market.
Wood of the tree is dense and can be used for making furniture, martial equipment etc. The timber of the tree also fetches good price. Fresh sprouts emerge, if the tree is cut 4 feet from the ground. So, this tree is helpful to stop soil piping and soil erosion which results in landslides.