ABOUT THEOBROMA CACAO
Theobroma Cacao – Grow your own Chocolate at home! A small, tropical evergreen, up to 25 feet, with thick, oblong-oval, entire leaves. The cacao “beans” are produced in large, angular orange-ish capsules, up to a foot long and 4 inches diameter. The capsule rind is thick, hard and leathery. The capsules grow along the trunk and main branches. The beans, or seeds, about an inch across, range from 20 to 40 per capsule, and are imbedded in an acid, fleshy pulp. After removal from the capsule, the beans are washed or fermented to remove the mucilaginous pulp. Chocolate is the sweetened or unsweetened product of the roasted and ground beans, with most of the fat retained.
These are very healthy trees with well established root systems. This Theobroma Cacao is ready to be repotted and enjoyed upon delivery.
Please note: Leaves are often trimmed prior to shipping to reduce transpiration and travel stress. The growth rate of Theobroma Cacao will vary greatly depending on season, soil type, sunlight, temperature and other factors. Always changing!
THEOBROMA CACAO CARE
Theobroma Cacao are very easy to grow tropical fruiting trees that and seem to grow best when neglected. They add a wonderful accent to any outdoor space, garden or patio. In very cold zones a containerized Theobroma Cacao can be brought inside for the winter months. Most will survive a very light frost and quickly return to normal in spring. In the northern end of their grow zone Theobroma Cacao trees should be brought indoors or protected during the winter months.
When you receive your new tree, there is no need to worry about planting right away. Your new tree can be stored for a while by simply placing it in a bucket with about a half inch of water in the bottom and moving it a shady location. You can then add some mulch to the bucket to keep your Theobroma Cacao standing straight. The mulch will also supply nutrients while in storage. This will give you plenty of time to select the ideal location for your Theobroma Cacao.
Most gardeners don’t realize that Theobroma Cacao trees grow very well in patio containers. Allow enough room for growth generally a 18″ to a 30″ diameter, 14″ deep container will suffice. Remember the looser the roots, the taller and healthier your tree will be. When the tree becomes root bound its growth will slow. At that point it is time for a larger pot.
Theobroma Cacao enjoy well drained but moist, rich organic mix. Remember try to stay away from wet, mucky soils.
To help establish your new Theobroma Cacao, fertilize sparingly, biannually with a slow time release fertilizer. Unfertilized they will tend to grow very slowly. WARNING – The heavy salts in cheaper fertilizers may damage the roots thus killing the tree.
GROW ZONE & LIGHT
Best outdoors if grown in zone 10-11, find your zone here. This tree requires 85-100% sunlight. Depending on your location full sun is best. The patio zone is 4b-11 which means the potted tree will flourish over the summer months in this zone but must be brought inside for the winter months. (avoid frost)
BEFORE YOU PLANT OUTDOORS
Here at the nursery these trees are grown under 20-40% shade cloth. If you plant directly in full sun you may experience leaf burn. It is best to acclimate this tree to its environment by keeping it outside and slowly moving it into a sunny area over a week or two to avoid stress before planting.
WHAT IS THE SHIPPING SIZE
All trees for sale will vary in size. In the spring, trees are often smaller than trees shipped in the fall. Most trees designated with a (-4, or -6) will arrive in a standard 4 inch or 6 inch growers pot respectively. Our new, reusable, recyclable deep cells are 7 inches deep and 2.5 inches in diameter. Products growing in these cells are easy to transplant and allow for deeper, faster growth and are designated with a (-7). The color and style of these pots may vary. If we are out of a particular size item, we may ship a larger size at no additional charge.
Note: Before leaving, Theobroma Cacao are inspected, watered, pruned if necessary and topped to 36″ to facilitate shipping. Your new tree is then bagged to keep the soil moist, to ensure that the soil stays in the pot and not loose in the box. Then your tree is tissue or kraft paper wrapped and secured in place with natural biodegradable peanuts. You will be pleased.
You may want to buy Theobroma Cacao online now while they are in stock.