Something a little different


Something a little different

words by
kristee semmler // the barossa nursery

No doubt at one time or another we have all enjoyed fruits such as apples, pears, watermelon, apricots and strawberries from the shops, our own gardens or local orchards.

However, sometimes it’s nice to try something a little different, or better yet, grow something a little different.

Unusual and exotic fruits can be found around the world, many of them being tropical fruits which won’t grow here, but that doesn’t mean we can’t grow our own unusual fruits right here in the Barossa


Also known as ‘pineapple guava’ quite simply because it tastes like a cross between a pineapple and a guava.

This highly fragrant fruit is delicious eaten fresh by cutting in half and scooping out the flesh.

Feijoas also taste great in jams, cakes, salsas and jellies.

For anyone feeling adventurous, there is also a Feijoa flavoured vodka available that tastes amazing with apple juice!

A Feijoa tree will grow 3-5 metres tall but can be kept smaller with pruning.

It also makes an attractive fruiting hedge with its gorgeous and dense foliage.


Rich, sweet and delicate in flavour, persimmons have a taste like no other.

‘Fuyu’ is the most popular variety these days as it’s skin doesn’t have that astringent taste like some of the other varieties can if not eaten when fully ripe.

Persimmons are delicious in pies, cakes and puddings and they are also an incredibly attractive tree in the garden, with stunning autumn foliage.


Becoming more and more popular, these unique fruits look like a mystical dragon egg.

They have a light melon or kiwi fruit flavour and are actually produced by a type of cactus.

Dragonfruits are great fresh, in smoothies or juices and in fruit salads where they give a real wow factor.

They can grow quite large and heavy and supports are often needed.

As with many cacti, a sunny, frost free position is best


Pepinos have a distinctive melon flavour, similar to that of a rockmelon or honey melon.

The best way to eat them is to peel their thin skin off and eat fresh or with ice cream.

Pepinos are a small rambling shrub that prefers a part shade or slightly sheltered position and they can grow and produce really well here in the Barossa.

Finger Lime

The fruit of finger limes are prized for their ‘caviar’ type texture and appearance.

Bursting with zesty flavour, they have a lemon/ lime flavour and work well in any dish that calls for a citrus tang.

Finger limes are an Australian native plant, native to the sub-tropics in QLD and northern NSW.

Here in the Barossa, grow them in a partly shaded north facing position protected from the worst of the frosts.

Irish Strawberry Tree

Called so because their bright red fruits resemble little strawberries.

The fruits of the Irish strawberry tree can be eaten fresh or in jams and sauces.

They have a slightly gritty texture and a woody, apricot, guava, peach type flavour.

Irish Strawberry trees are an attractive tree or large shrub with dark green leaves and bell shaped cream flowers.

They make a lovely addition to the garden and the fruit is a bonus.


A bit more well known, but still not commonly available, pomegranates are round, red fruits, packed full of crunchy, juicy seeds.

They are really good for you, and pack an antioxidant punch!

Pomegranate seeds are best eaten fresh.

They look and taste amazing in salads, great on yoghurt and ice cream and lovely just as a snack on its own.

Pomegranates are a very ornamental large shrub and very hardy once established.

Nothing beats the taste of home grown produce, and if you have the space, these more unusual fruits are no exception.

They are certainly a great talking point and add interest to many dishes and also to gardens.

Given the right position, all these fruits will grow here in the Barossa, satisfying your taste for something a little different.

Happy gardening!

Kristee Semmler


If you have any good gardening old wive’s tales, feel free to share them by leaving a comment online on the Barossa Mag’s website.

I do love hearing a good tale! 

In the meantime, happy gardening!

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