About two hundred species of shrubs or small trees belong to the genus zizyphus, which generally reach 4-5 meters in height, slow growing, of Asian and Mediterranean origin. For centuries they have been cultivated as fruit trees; z. sativa is the most widespread species in Italy, accompanied by z. jujuba: these are large shrubs or small trees, with deciduous leaves, quite small in size, with rounded crown, generally quite messy. The bark of the Zizyphus jujuba is dark and the stems are thickly branched; the foliage is small in size, bright green in color, with serrated edge. In spring, in the leaf axilla, the Zizyphus jujuba produces small yellowish flowers, of little decorative value; during the autumn months the small fruits ripen, similar to pulpy olives: green in color, as they mature they gradually become reddish-brown in color. The fruits are not easy to find on the market, they are quite sweet, with a floury consistency. On the market it is also possible to find grafted varieties, called jujube-apple, with large-sized fruits, with sugary and firm flesh. Some parts of the plant are also used in herbal medicine and herbal medicine.
It prefers sunny, or even partially shaded positions; they do not fear the cold weather, but it seems that plants grown in areas with very hot summer weather give better fruiting. These are rustic trees, which also find a place in places with extreme climatic conditions, with a very dry and hot climate.