This dicotyledonous plant is scientifically known as Nephelium lappaceum of the family Sapindaceae. The trees can be planted from the seeds, but for consistent characteristics and fruit quality and production, they are normally planted from bud-grafted seedling. The fruit has a thick skin with "tentacles" projecting out, giving a hair-like appearance. Inside the skin is found the seed that is covered by a relatively thick and succulent whitish flesh. This is the edible part.
Roughly there two kinds of rambutan, which are the red-ripening and the yellow ripening. The yellow ripening fruits are less sweet but more juicy. The red-ripening can be sweeter or very much less sweet. It all depends on the varieties or whether they are of known variety or they are of unknown genotypes and planted from seeds by the village people.
On more detailed examination, it is reported that rambutan are of many types of which five types are of good quality namely:
a) Rambutan Rapiah
b) Rambutan Aceh
c) Rambutan Cimacan
d) Rambutan Binjai
e) Rambutan Sinyonya