Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon:
- Broadleaf evergreen tree which may reach a height of 40-50(68) ft [12-15(21) m]; it has a dense, spreading canopy. Bark brown, smooth, with warty dots (lenticels). All parts of the tree yield latex, a milky juice. Leaves alternate, having a stout 2.5-5 cm stalk (petiole) and large blade, 15-60 cm or longer, ovate, deeply pinnately 3- lobed, dark green, thick and leathery, pubescent below and on veins above. Flowers are in abundance but minute; both sexes on the same tree (monoecious). Male flowers are yellowish, in clusters resembling catkins to 30 cm long, club-shaped, curved downward or drooping. Female flower clusters are light green, elliptical or rounded clusters, about 6 cm long 4 cm wide. The compound, false fruit it large (10-20 cm long and 20 cm wide); it originates from 1,500-2,000 flowers. Remnants of these are visible on the skin of the fruit as hexagon-like disks. Ripe fruit are yellowish brown with a starchy pulp that is creamy white to pale yellow. Fruit may contain several large brown seeds, but seedless selections, or nearly so, are commonly cultivated.
- Fruit are typically mature and ready to cook and eat as a starchy staple in 15-19 weeks. The sweet, creamy flesh can be eaten raw or cooked. The name “breadfruit” is derived from the texture of the cooked moderately ripe fruit, which has a potato-like flavor, similar to freshly baked bread.
- Full sun to light shade, consistently moist soil.
- Hardy to USDA Zone 11 (tropical) Apparently it originated in the South Pacific and was eventually spread to the rest of Oceania by islanders settling other islands. It was spread further by British and French navigators and now is grown in some 90 countries in the tropics.
- Artocarpus: Greek, artos, bread, and karpos, fruit; a reference to the starchy, edible fruit; the flavor is reminiscent of baked potato or fresh bread. altilis: fat