Growing Cacao Trees

Annette Jimison
11/07/08 01:49:26AM
14 posts

I so would like to grow my own cacao trees. I guess once smitten by the whole process, you want to look into the feasibility of growing a few of your own. Yes, just to have them, at first. But, what if they take to your area? What parts of the states are good for raising cacao trees? Are there any "hot-house" trees, i.e., greenhouse grown? This would be interesting to me. Where would a person find cacao trees, male and female, and/or self-pollinating (is that the correct term?) to start with?I think once you are truly smitten by this passion, (it's more than a hobby or business, it truly is), having a few trees of your own is understood. Just like wanting to make your own chocolate from bean to bar.At a new job that I started today, I shared that my hobby is "manufacturing chocolate", and the response was just as wonderful as you would expect. This is nice. I even have a few that want to come over when I am roasting the beans to see what is done.I can't wait to start sharing this with them. Perhaps we can develop a group of some sort locally of people who want to explore this together!!! I would so love that, even if I cannot grow a couple of trees where I live right now, I can definitely share this passion with others!

updated by @annette-jimison: 05/02/15 04:22:05PM
Carlos Eichenberger
11/08/08 10:15:27AM
158 posts
Cacao requires a very moist and warm climate to thrive. In Arizona it would be quite the endeavor because of your extremely dry climate. It would certainly mean having the tree(s) in a climate-controlled greenhouse with misting and other humidity enhancers.
01/13/16 10:58:12AM
12 posts

Hi Annette.
I'm interested in your activities .
It might be difficult.
But, I believe that if I can also grow cacao tree in Japan.
And if successful it is wonderful.
I'll study harder in future.


01/13/16 12:15:30PM
754 posts

 Where are you at?  Both Rutgers and Penn State have cocoa trees growing at their campuses...

José Crespo
01/13/16 08:54:39PM
21 posts

If you need high quality seeds :

We accept only  bitcoin at our web store. (Just as cacao beans at some point were used as currency)

If interested you can use  Circle or Coinbase to purchase.

Good luck!

updated by @jos-crespo: 06/23/16 10:43:45PM
01/14/16 01:24:43AM
12 posts

Thank you both.
I live in Japan.
I am an amateur.(*'-'*)
That has become a great help.

04/18/17 04:17:42AM
20 posts

Carlos Eichenberger: Cacao requires a very moist and warm climate to thrive. In Arizona it would be quite the endeavor because of your extremely dry climate. It would certainly mean having the tree(s) in a climate-controlled greenhouse with misting and other humidity enhancers.

yup, i've searched about it tooo .:D

Eric K. Meredith
05/10/17 09:47:59AM
9 posts


This is our FIRST (1st) harvest in approx ONE (1) month. I live in Ghana. But everything I have read says up to 15 degrees each side of the equator under 8,000 feet above Seal Level & approx 3,000 MM per year of rain. We have TWO (2)  rainy seasons per year & the harvest is after the rainy seasons. This June is the smaller Harvest & the main Harvest is around December. They recommend TWO (2) separate methods of planting #1) Open clear field. Start with a Cover Crop at first Plantain Every 3 meters square & a primary shade tree like Coconuts every 12 Meters. After approx Six months plant your seedling Cocoa Plant approx 1 meter from the Plantain. Again your Cocoa Trees should be in a row of 3 meters square. The Plantain corp for the FIRST (1st) THREE (3) years to protect your Cocoa Trees from the sun. You will start your first harvest in between your THIRD (3rd) & FOURTH (4th) year. Then you can harvest the coconuts also about the same time.

#2) Existing forest, keep the bigger shad trees & partially clear & plant our Cocoa Seedlings Trees every 3 meters square. keep a good eye on your seedling Cocoa Trees the 1st THREE (3) years. Your 1st harvest should be between your third (3rd) & (4th) year.

In Ghana the CocoBod or Ghana Board of Cocoa will help you a lot & in fact you can even get FREE seedlings from the CocoBod if they have them in stock?? Good Luck.


Brian Mikiten
05/10/17 09:43:58PM
13 posts


  I'm in San Antonio and it can be done. It isn't cost effective and really just a hobby but fun nonetheless. I purchased trees from Hawaii after trying several other options with no success. They came 2nd day air and were about 3' tall when I got them. All of the smaller trees I tried (including seeds from a fresh pod) failed with the exception of two. Soil pH, mites, cold, humidity are all factors. I ended up setting up a greenhouse with humidity and temperature control for just a few trees so that they made it through the winter. No pods yet and I think I've spent enough to buy 40 sacks of beans. <G> I still make bean to bar chocolate from regular supply lines and don't know that I'll ever get enough pods to do anything MUCH LESS get my fermentation to a point where it is worthwhile. You should read about fermentation because after all the work, this can destroy the beans in just days. I'm visiting farms in Hawaii now and keep hearing about losses due to mold and other factors. I'd hate to see that on a small (micro) crop of beans after waiting years. 

  Either way, GOOD LUCK. 


Eric K. Meredith
05/11/17 02:24:39AM
9 posts
Hello Brain,
The average per tree is approx 1 KG of Dried Beans per tree. Wee use a SIX (6) day ferment in heaps wrapped in Plantain leaves. Turned Twice a day. Then Sun Dry on bamboo mats. I will send pictures.


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