Author Topic: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?  (Read 9153 times)

KarenRei

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Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« on: July 01, 2013, 09:42:07 AM »
So, the other day I noticed that one of my 6 or so pachira aquatica / malabar chestnut seeds has started to germinate.  I would expect that any others that are going to do so will probably do so within the next week or so.  I know that such trees are often sold with braided trunks in east asia, as an attractive style for being an indoor houseplant - they plant three seeds in a pot and braid the trunks as they grow.  It looks nice, but would doing so decrease my odds of ever getting fruit off them versus just planting one seed per pot?  That's always my ultimate goal, even if it's often a long shot  ;) 
« Last Edit: July 01, 2013, 09:47:37 AM by KarenRei »
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Ethan

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2013, 03:05:10 PM »
The fruiting trees I've seed all had single trunks.  I wonder if braiding would eventually strangle the plant or if it would just form into a multiple root stocked plant (and benefit)?  They are giant trees with such beautiful flowers.

luc

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2013, 07:36:23 PM »
Not sure if you have the P. aquatica or the Bombacopsis glabra , there is also another one with huge seeds /nuts wise I prefer the B. glabra and have several trees . I would not even think of braiding them unless you wanna go into dwarfing/bonsai them and I am afraid you may as well forget about fruits .
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fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2013, 11:49:21 PM »
If you want fruits then don't braid them. BTW, the braided plants you see in stores are usually Pachira glabrum, not Pachira aquatica.
Oscar

Tropicdude

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #4 on: July 02, 2013, 01:45:03 AM »
Braiding Pachira is sometimes used at the entrance of the house to bring good fortune.  using 5 braids.

I would plant in the ground if your looking for fruit.  I find Pachira aquatica to be an attractive tree.  and they do not have to be very big to grow fruit.  but not ornamental potted ones.
William
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fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2013, 01:51:47 AM »
Real Pachira aquatica can become a huge tree. (You can see one at edge of lake at Fairchild gardens.) The one that is braided, Pachira glabrum is a much smaller plant, with much smaller fruit, that is green on exterior. The aquatica fruit is brown on exterior and about 3x bigger in size. There has been a very long standing confusion about what is what in this genus.
Oscar

KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2013, 07:14:26 AM »
Thanks.  My P. aquatica is from Guaycuyacu Seeds**, so I assume that they labeled it correctly.  The seeds are about the size of macadamias that haven't been shelled.

Seems the consensus is "don't braid", so I won't.  :)

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I would plant in the ground if your looking for fruit.

Up here in Iceland that would be a death wish for a tropical  ;)  But I do have ~15 foot ceilings in my current place and I'm hoping to have ~40 foot in the home I plan to build (waiting on information about whether it'd even be possible to get permits on the land I want to buy... :Ů), so I should have no trouble handling some pretty big trees.  (and yes, I have more lights for my plants than you can shake a stick at, and yes, I'm very thankful that electricity is cheap here  ;)  )  For now in my current place I'm using only pots, but I plan to have some embedded concrete cisterns for large trees built into the home.

---

** Yes, Guaycuyacu is closed to new customers.  But I gave them a "whatever you have onhand from this list that you can send for this amount of money whenever you get the chance" offer, so he made an exception this once.  :)
« Last Edit: July 02, 2013, 07:38:14 AM by KarenRei »
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Tropicdude

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2013, 09:36:43 PM »
Think Bonsai,  plant them in a very small container with just enough soil to cover the roots.  this should keep em small.
William
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Kay

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2013, 01:04:55 AM »
they can grow in insanely small containers and still grow a respectable size, talking about the green skinned fruit not brown.  until this thread i never new the difference.  i see 4m trees coming out of 12" pots here.  tough plants! i too have not seen plants that are super root bound fruit, but i have seen potted plants fruit.  the wild plants fo the green skinned fruit get up to 30'.  not huge, but not tiny either.

fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2013, 04:26:40 AM »
they can grow in insanely small containers and still grow a respectable size, talking about the green skinned fruit not brown.  until this thread i never new the difference.  i see 4m trees coming out of 12" pots here.  tough plants! i too have not seen plants that are super root bound fruit, but i have seen potted plants fruit.  the wild plants fo the green skinned fruit get up to 30'.  not huge, but not tiny either.

The green skinned fruit is P. glabrum. That one doesn't even need a container, or even any soil. Here they are often sold being grown on just a piece of lava rock!
Oscar

KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2013, 05:51:15 AM »
they can grow in insanely small containers and still grow a respectable size, talking about the green skinned fruit not brown.  until this thread i never new the difference.  i see 4m trees coming out of 12" pots here.  tough plants! i too have not seen plants that are super root bound fruit, but i have seen potted plants fruit.  the wild plants fo the green skinned fruit get up to 30'.  not huge, but not tiny either.

The green skinned fruit is P. glabrum. That one doesn't even need a container, or even any soil. Here they are often sold being grown on just a piece of lava rock!

Hmm, interesting - I have no shortage of lava rock around here  ;)  Any clue if the fruit is any good?
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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2013, 06:24:43 AM »
they can grow in insanely small containers and still grow a respectable size, talking about the green skinned fruit not brown.  until this thread i never new the difference.  i see 4m trees coming out of 12" pots here.  tough plants! i too have not seen plants that are super root bound fruit, but i have seen potted plants fruit.  the wild plants fo the green skinned fruit get up to 30'.  not huge, but not tiny either.

The green skinned fruit is P. glabrum. That one doesn't even need a container, or even any soil. Here they are often sold being grown on just a piece of lava rock!

Hmm, interesting - I have no shortage of lava rock around here  ;)  Any clue if the fruit is any good?

What you eat are the seeds. The fruits have no pulp inside. The seeds are quite tasty, especially roasted, and do taste somewhat like chestnuts. But that is glabrum, and you say you have aquatica? Some of the aquaticas are good and others pretty bad tasting.
Oscar

Kay

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2013, 07:29:55 AM »
I dont want to take over the thread, but could i post pictures of mine to see what species they are?  im confused now.  the green skinned ones are edible and are grown for food here in the mountains.  like fruitlovers said they dont even need pots.  here commercial fields of it are stripped of all leaves and roots and trucked out to be exported.  its really amazing how tough they are.

do you know if the seeds are safe to eat raw?

KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2013, 07:36:15 AM »
they can grow in insanely small containers and still grow a respectable size, talking about the green skinned fruit not brown.  until this thread i never new the difference.  i see 4m trees coming out of 12" pots here.  tough plants! i too have not seen plants that are super root bound fruit, but i have seen potted plants fruit.  the wild plants fo the green skinned fruit get up to 30'.  not huge, but not tiny either.

The green skinned fruit is P. glabrum. That one doesn't even need a container, or even any soil. Here they are often sold being grown on just a piece of lava rock!

Hmm, interesting - I have no shortage of lava rock around here  ;)  Any clue if the fruit is any good?

What you eat are the seeds. The fruits have no pulp inside. The seeds are quite tasty, especially roasted, and do taste somewhat like chestnuts. But that is glabrum, and you say you have aquatica? Some of the aquaticas are good and others pretty bad tasting.

I meant the seeds.  :)  And yes, I have aquatica, unless Guaycuyacu labeled it wrong.  So glabrum are consistently good eating quality and aquatica not?  Combined with the size differences and glabrum being hardier, kinda makes me wish I had glabrum instead.

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I dont want to take over the thread

No, no, go right ahead, I'm totally into learning all things Pachira- related here.  :)
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fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #14 on: July 03, 2013, 04:51:34 PM »
I dont want to take over the thread, but could i post pictures of mine to see what species they are?  im confused now.  the green skinned ones are edible and are grown for food here in the mountains.  like fruitlovers said they dont even need pots.  here commercial fields of it are stripped of all leaves and roots and trucked out to be exported.  its really amazing how tough they are.

do you know if the seeds are safe to eat raw?

Yes the seeds of P. glabrum are good to ear raw, germinated like sprouts, or roasted. I think they taste best roasted or sprouted, but sometimes also eat them raw.
Oscar

luc

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #15 on: July 03, 2013, 06:02:47 PM »
Here are some pics of the one with huge seeds , not very palatable...



Luc Vleeracker
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KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2013, 07:51:52 AM »
Hmm... my seeds don't look like that, they're more rounded, and not as big. 

Perhaps I should take a picture this evening after work.
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KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #17 on: July 04, 2013, 08:25:08 PM »
Here's the first of my Pachira seeds to begin germinating.  Thoughts on the species?



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luc

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #18 on: July 04, 2013, 09:35:17 PM »
Here's the first of my Pachira seeds to begin germinating.  Thoughts on the species?




Karen , this seed doesn't look like the P. glabra or P. aquatica .
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fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #19 on: July 05, 2013, 04:55:26 AM »
I agree with Luc.
Oscar

KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #20 on: July 05, 2013, 05:12:09 AM »
Here's the first of my Pachira seeds to begin germinating.  Thoughts on the species?




Karen , this seed doesn't look like the P. glabra or P. aquatica .


Hmm, interesting.  Then I wonder what Guaycuyacu sent me labeled as Pachira aquatica?  I'm rather curious - they collect some pretty exotic stuff   ;)  Do recall that it's been sitting in a germination bag for a few weeks, so this may have had a small effect on its color or texture.

I haven't noticed any oddities with anything else they sent thusfar, but I guess I should give extra attention.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2013, 05:16:43 AM by KarenRei »
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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #21 on: July 05, 2013, 05:25:16 AM »
Could be due to discoloration. Seed seems too large to be glabrum. With the aquaticas there seems to be some confusion as to what aquatica really refers to as this genus easily hybridizes in the wild. Jim knows his stuff and rarely makes mistakes. I've noticed that what is refered to as aquatica in Florida is very different than what is called aquatica in S. America. Also aquatica from Florida is called barely edible, while the aquatica in S. America is said to be good eating.
Best is to identify from flower color and from the pod, not from the seeds.
Oscar

KarenRei

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #22 on: July 05, 2013, 07:39:31 AM »
Could be due to discoloration. Seed seems too large to be glabrum. With the aquaticas there seems to be some confusion as to what aquatica really refers to as this genus easily hybridizes in the wild. Jim knows his stuff and rarely makes mistakes. I've noticed that what is refered to as aquatica in Florida is very different than what is called aquatica in S. America. Also aquatica from Florida is called barely edible, while the aquatica in S. America is said to be good eating.
Best is to identify from flower color and from the pod, not from the seeds.

Haha, that could be a long time  ;)  Not possible to do from the leaves, perhaps?
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fruitlovers

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #23 on: July 05, 2013, 06:39:08 PM »
Could be due to discoloration. Seed seems too large to be glabrum. With the aquaticas there seems to be some confusion as to what aquatica really refers to as this genus easily hybridizes in the wild. Jim knows his stuff and rarely makes mistakes. I've noticed that what is refered to as aquatica in Florida is very different than what is called aquatica in S. America. Also aquatica from Florida is called barely edible, while the aquatica in S. America is said to be good eating.
Best is to identify from flower color and from the pod, not from the seeds.

Pachiras are very fast growing, very fast flowering, and fruiting. I could rule out glabrum from the leaves, but couldn't tell you for sure if it's really aquatica. There are other species in genus that have similar leaves.

Haha, that could be a long time  ;)  Not possible to do from the leaves, perhaps?
Oscar

luc

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Re: Pachira aquatica - to braid or not to braid?
« Reply #24 on: July 05, 2013, 07:17:37 PM »
From the leaves we can confirm Pachira or not ....maybe you got very lucky and ended up with seeds that were supposed to go to somebody else , ( don't hold your breath ) but mistakes happen.....

If not I'll send you seeds of my best tasting Pachira , you will see the difference immediately . Will check tomorrow how the fruit/nut situation is now .
Luc Vleeracker
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