Theobroma cacao

COMMON NAME

Cacao tree

TYPE

Tree

FAMILY

Malvaceae

NOTES

The flowers are produced in clusters directly on the trunk and older branches; this is known as cauliflory.The fruit, called a cacao pod, is ovoid and ripening yellow to orange.  The pod contains 20 to 60 seeds, usually called "beans", embedded in a white pulp. The seeds are the main ingredient of chocolate once dried, fermented and roasted, the pulp is used in some countries to prepare refreshing juice, smoothies, jelly, and nata. The Latin name for cacao is Theobroma, which means 'food of the gods.'

GEOGRAPHIC REGION

S. America - Brazil, Peru, Colombia, the Guyanas; C. America - Belize, Guatemala, southern Mexico

NATIVE HABITAT

An understorey plant of evergreen rainforest in the wet humid tropics, growing in places that are not usually seasonally inundated

WEB SOURCES

wikipedia.org

tropical.theferns.info

rainforest-alliance.org



Theobroma cacao