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Just got two pods and want to grow some trees. It will be a challenge as I am in Northern MN.
However, I have a bright warm room with the only expectation of the beauty and joy of growing the trees. nothing else.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you,

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Just my two cents worth on this. Remember that cacao grows in the humid high temperature tropics. 80% to 90% humidity, between 70F and 100f in temperatures at all times. If the temperature goes below 60F (roughly) the trees will die. They love water but don't like their roots standing in water - good drainage is optimal. A greenhouse is best. Most North American conservatories (Bronx, Brooklyn, Chicago and many others) have cacao trees that flower and produce pods! It is true that in some areas where cacao grows there is a dry season, but there is always water available. 30% shade is good but don't go below 10% otherwise the cacao leaves will get burned.

I tried to grow cacao from seedlings that I bought from a place in FL, but without a greenhouse and in the climate I live in they did very poorly and almost died due to the lack humidity (no matter what I did) and to the cold in winter. I gave them to someone with a greenhouse who grows orchids. I live in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Good luck!
Hi Heidi,
May I know where to get the pods from?

Many thanks!
I have grown cacao plants indoors and they can adapt to low humidity just fine. I have produced pods in the elevator lobby outside my office! Check out the attached pdf with instructions how to grow a cacao plant indoors, complete with pictures of our elevator plant complete with pods. Sorry the pics are a little fuzzy had to reduce them to make the file size small.

That's great Mark! Many thanks!!

Would you be able to advice where I can find the pods to grow them? If you can point to me any websites or can you sell me a couple? :)
No sorry I do not have a source of seeds but have seen them online from time to time. Problem is, they have no dormancy, so its pretty difficult. They are restricted for importation into the US so to do it legally you need a phytosanitary permit from the country of origin and an import permit you can get from USDA APHIS.
If you want to grow a cacao tree in a non-tropical environment, the simplest way to go about it is to keep the potted plant in the bathroom, preferably at the far end of the bathtub, so it absorbs humidity and dampness from a hot shower.  The bathroom is also the ideal place (or a steam room, really) if you want to grow vanilla orchids as well.  We have more than 20,000 cacao trees growing in the  Yucatan, by the way. Louis
but you won't get pods because you need an insect to pollinate.

Greencow, thank you so much for that PDF. I hope to utilize this information in Puerto Rico this March.


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