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The Real Lychee Season

by Krystal Folino

The commonly accepted season for Brewster lychee fruit in South Florida (May - June) is incorrect. The real season for fresh lychee fruit is mid-June to mid-July.

Far too many growers sell partially ripe lychees in a rush to get their fruit to market. Growers with groves of hundreds or thousands of acres of ripening lychees need to be able to sell all of their lychees by the end of the season. These growers start selling the fruit as soon as the fruit becomes edible and create a false impression of the quality of the lychees during the beginning of May.

Many lychee growers try to sell their fruit early, before the insects and birds begin to damage the fruit. Birds and insects also prefer the riper lychee fruit. This damage to the ripe fruit can result in a 10-50% reduction in the growers' lychee crop.

By flooding the early lychee market with inferior fruit, growers tarnish the public's perception of what fresh lychee fruit looks and tastes like.

By waiting until mid-June to buy your fresh lychees, you both help to improve the future quality of lychee fruit in the U.S. and ensure that you get the best possible lychee fruit now.

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