Chocolate Cacao Tree
It will flower intermittently year-round.
Cacao bears flowers and fruit virtually year round. When ripe, the fruit may be cut open, revealing 20 to 40 beans surrounded by pulp that is said by those who have tried to be the most exceptional flavor ever experienced. Unfortunately, the gooey pulp has no shelf life.
Chocolate was developed in the late 1700's by removing the beans and drying and fermenting. The cacao butter is removed, the seed ground to powder, and sugar and vanilla are added along with the cacao butter. Fortunes were made from chocolate, including Cadbury, Mars, and Hershey. Hershey added milk to the process to develop milk chocolate, which is primarily sold in the US.
Cacao makes a great container plant for the patio. It is a great conversation piece as it is ornamental as well as a big part of our economy. Chocolate is thought to have numerous medicinal properties, including the effect as an aphrodisiac.
If you've got a big container and a bit of shade, you can grow this exotic Cacao tree right on your patio or deck! A fast-growing evergreen that begins flowering and fruiting within a few seasons, it reaches just 4 to 8 feet tall in a container, setting plenty of handsome flowers and delicious fruits!
Attractive with bright green "pleated" leaves year-round, it flowers directly on the trunk. The creamy to pink blooms are just 1 inch across, and quite pretty. They are followed by large oval fruits that begin green and gradually mature to yellow and orange. Reaching 6 to 12 inches long and up to 4 inches wide, they look like giant pods.
Whether you grow this tree for its delicious fruit or simply for its beauty, you'll find it easy to care for. Give it a bit of shade, plenty of water, and nice humid summers, and it's happy! Bring it indoors when temperatures threaten to dip below 60 degrees F, and enjoy it as a winter houseplant. It will flower intermittently year-round. Zones 9-11.
Only a Limited Supply Available
|Item Form||Trade Gallon (3qt)|
|Zone||9 - 11|
|Plant Height||4 ft - 8 ft|
|Plant Width||24 in|
|Bloom Size||.5 in - 1 in|
|Additional Characteristics||Easy Care Plants, Edible, Evergreen, Fast Growing, Indoor Growing|
|Bloom Color||Cream, Light Pink, Light Yellow|
|Foliage Color||Medium Green|
|Light Requirements||Full Sun, Part Shade|
|Moisture Requirements||Moist, well-drained|
|Resistance||Heat Tolerant, Humidity Tolerant|
|Soil Tolerance||Normal, loamy|
|Uses||Containers, Cuisine, Foliage Interest, Ornamental, Specimen|
|Restrictions||Canada, Guam, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands|