Clay recommended I get in touch with you. I've been researching cacao places of interest in Kauai. I'm headed there later this month for a bit of R&R and being me, I would like to get in some research and experiences on all things cacao there. Any direction you might have would be helpful. Thanks in advance for your time.
We hear from many people that you are the go to guy for information on cacao in hawaii. We are currently in school in San Francisco, but planted seeds from my Grandma's tree in Maunawili while in Hawaii mid January, the picture attached is where they were at a couple weeks ago. The pots we used are typical plastic plant pots, but we've seen many photos now of the cacao growing in long skinny pots. We were wondering how long you think the plants would last in these pots as we will not be back to the island until May? We also would like to know how long they will last out of the ground, we are trying to replant them in Waiahole, but the land is overgrown and we are reluctant to plant them until we can watch over them a little more closely.
-Megan and Tia
I just found the oldest pure criollo on Kauai, the tree is over 30 years old. I found it growing all by it self in the jungle of an old botanical garden, it is the oldest cacao tree I have yet found on Kauai. It is a Obrama Criollo. Do you know anything about this type. Is Obrama just short for Theobroma? I believe it is a pure strain of Criollo. I have not yet had the chance to make chocolate from this tree.
We are also propagating Theobroma grandiflorum (Sterculiaceae) or cupuassu. We are trying to get as many of the approximately 22 Theobroma species as we can and experimenting is cross pollination and making chocolate from these hybrids. Such as adding cupulate to chocolate.
I like to think I leave an impression and people remember who I am. I clearly remember meeting you after your presentation and I think you were among a group of us who went to dinner not far from the hotel. I still have a copy of your presentation and refer to on occasion. I've been in contact with a local grower and we're in the early phases of putting together an interesting plan. When it's a little more fleshed out I plan to reach out and talk to you about it.
Glad to see you here to reconnect. I was a part of Pam Williams' Hawaii Cacao group in 2005 at Kailua/Kona. There appears to have been a lot of real exciting progress on the islands since then. I am looking forward to returning to see the changes first-hand.