This is a species from Central America which recently has been introduced into California, Florida, and a few other regions. In the countries where it is native it is found occasionally in gardens, but nowhere is it cultivated extensively. Its fruit is highly acid and is valued for jelly-making.
The tree is erect, about 25 feet high, with slender trunk and branches. The young branchlets are wiry, quadrangular and reddish in color. The leaves are elliptic, oblong-elliptic, or oval in form, 1 1/2 to 3 inches long, acuminate at the apex, almost glossy on the upper surface and puberulent on the lower. The flowers are produced singly on slender peduncles; they are white, fragrant, and about an inch broad. The calyx is closed, but splits into irregular segments when the flower expands. The petals, five in number, are waxy in appearance. The fruit is round or oval in form, and 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 inches long, sulfur-yellow in color, with comparatively few seeds, and soft white flesh of acid flavor with none of the musky aroma which characterizes some of the other guavas.
In Costa Rica the indigenous name for this fruit is cas. A plant which has been introduced into the United States from the island of Trinidad under the name Psidium laurifolium is evidently P. Friedrichsthalianum. When planted in southern Florida it has grown well, but in southern California it has usually been killed by frost. Plants in Florida have not borne heavy crops, and the species does not seem to possess great promise for that state.