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Ceiba aesculifolia - (Kunth) Britten & Baker

Common Name Pochote
Family Malvaceae
USDA hardiness 10-12
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Chiefly on dry plains or hillsides, mainly at elevations up to 1,500 metres[ 331 ]. A rare species found in low, dry deciduous forests from Mexico to Costa Rica .
Range Central America - Costa Rica north to Mexico.
Edibility Rating    (2 of 5)
Other Uses    (4 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (1 of 5)
Care
Tender Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Ceiba aesculifolia Pochote


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Ceiba aesculifolia Pochote
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Summary

Found in Central America, Pochote (Ceiba aesculifolia) is a tropical deciduous tree with a thick, short bole and spreading crown. It reaches up to 25 m tall. Young fruit and ripe seeds are edible when cooked - ripe fruits are stewed and seeds are roasted. Seedpods are sources of floss that has various uses like as stuffing material in pillows, toys, and cushions, as tinder for starting fires, as material in weaving covers, and as an insulating material in refrigerators. Found In: Central America, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, North America. Other names: Ceibillo, Pochotte ceiba, Pochote apochote, Ceiba, Puchote.


Physical Characteristics

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Ceiba aesculifolia is a deciduous Tree growing to 25 m (82ft) by 20 m (65ft) at a medium rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 10. The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Bombax aesculifolium Kunth Ceiba acuminata (S.Watson) Rose Eriodendron acuminatum S.Watson Eriodendr

Habitats

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit  Leaves  Seed
Edible Uses:

Edible portion: Fruit, Seeds. Young leaves - cooked[ 317 ] Ripe fruits are eaten stewed[ 317 ]. The young tender fruits are sometimes cooked and eaten[ 331 ]. Seeds - roasted[ 317 , 331 ].

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.


A plant recommended for digestive disorders. In the State of Mexico it is used as a purgative and emetic and Quintana Roo only as an emetic. In Yucatan fermented bark is used for sunstroke.

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Edible Shrubs provides detailed information, attractively presented, on over 70 shrub species. They have been selected to provide a mix of different plant sizes and growing conditions. Most provide delicious and nutritious fruit, but many also have edible leaves, seeds, flowers, stems or roots, or they yield edible or useful oil.

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Edible Shrubs Book

Other Uses

Other uses rating: High (4/5). Other Uses: The seedpods contain an abundant floss that has a wide range of uses. Traditionally, it is used as a stuffing material in pillows, cushions, toys etc; as a tinder for starting fires; and can also be used to make wicks for candles[ 46 , 331 ]. The Maya used to weave covers from it[ 317 , 331 ]. In more recent times, the floss has been found to be very effective as an insulating material in refrigerators[ 317 ].

Special Uses

Carbon Farming

Cultivation details

Industrial Crop: Fiber  Management: Standard  Regional Crop

It is a tropical plant. Succeeds in poor, dry soils[ 331 ].

Carbon Farming

  • Industrial Crop: Fiber  Clothing, rugs, sheets, blankets etc. Currently, almost none of our fiber are produced from perennial crops but could be!
  • Management: Standard  Plants grow to their standard height. Harvest fruit, seeds, or other products. Non-Destructive management systems.
  • Regional Crop  These crops have been domesticated and cultivated regionally but have not been adopted elsewhere and are typically not traded globally, Examples in this broad category include perennial cottons and many nuts and staple fruits.

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Plants For A Future have a number of books available in paperback and digital form. Book titles include Edible Plants, Edible Perennials, Edible Trees, and Woodland Gardening. Our new book to be released soon is Edible Shrubs.

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Propagation

Seed

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

Pochote (Ceiba aesculifolia). Other names: Ceibillo, Pochotte ceiba, Pochote apochote, Ceiba, Puchote.

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Found In: Central America, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, North America.

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

None Known

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status : This taxon has not yet been assessed.

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Bombax ceibaRed Silk Cotton Tree, Kapok TreeTree25.0 10-12 MLMHNDM224
Ceiba pentandraKapok Tree, Cotton Tree, Suma'maTree50.0 10-12 FMHNDM335

 

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Author

(Kunth) Britten & Baker

Botanical References

Links / References

For a list of references used on this page please go here
A special thanks to Ken Fern for some of the information used on this page.

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