Anyone growing spice trees ?

farmfreedomJanuary 27, 2006

Anyone growing spice trees ? Nutmeg , cloves, mace allspice , camphor , star anice ,carobe , black pepper, cinammon , cardamon , vanilla beans , others ?

1)what do you grow ?

2)where can I buy some?

3)what should I look for ?

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johndp8888(Oahu, Hawaii)

On Oahu cinnamon (cinnamomun verum) is a recently introduced pest tree that is becoming the dominant tree in the Pali area. It is attrctive and grows well in that environment but is weedy and probably should not be introduced elsewhere. I understand the same is true with allspice.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2006 at 12:56PM
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hotzcatz(Hamakua, Hawaii)

Mace is part of the cinnamon tree isn't it? The inner bark or some such?

Black pepper is a vine and you can get it at Garden Exchange. It grows pretty well and makes peppercorns, at least my friend's peppervine does. So far, mine hasn't been doing anywhere as well as hers does. She has hers in a shady spot, growing on the trunk of a big hapu'u, perhaps they prefer shade and mine planted in full sun may not appreciate it.

Cardamom is a type of ginger and you can get them at Ada's plant place over by Tex Drive In in Honokaa and probably at Garden Exchange as well. Or you could try Royal Palm Enterprises at and see if he has any for sale. He can mail them to the mainland, too.

There are some folks growing vanilla orchids up in Ahuloa and I'm sure there are others. The vanilla plants have to be hand pollinated in order to get the vanilla beans since we don't have the proper insect here.

At the moment, I'm growing more herbs than spices. Rosemary, oregano, chives, onions, bay laurel, mint, sage, basils, etc. Most of the green leafy "spices". Rosemary and oregano will become a shrub if you let them. Most of those came from starts from other folk's houses. Just a bit of this and that broken off and stuck in the ground. More often than not, they will sprout roots and grow.

Isn't camphor part of the eucalyptus tree? I know those grow real well and there are many different varieties of them, too.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 12:11AM
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I have a clove tree, cinnamon, allspice, a huge vanilla vine that has never bloomed. Had a bay tree but it drowned out. Cacao grows fantastically well here in the rainforest. I planted the seeds of 1 pod about 4 years ago, now have a producing little chocolate orchard. there used to be wild peppervine along the Volcano Hiway between Hilo and Keaau, very pungent, made me want to sneeze every time I passed by. I decided not to plant that. Patchouli is another invasive smelly pest around here. PS nutmeg and mace come from the same tree, mace is the seed cover, nutmeg the nut. Cinnamon is tree bark.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2006 at 12:04PM
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For Vanilla Beans, you can buy the Vanilla Bean orchids from eBay. They originally came from Mexico. They are not native to Madagascar at all. They are native to North/Central America! I myself am hunting for Nutmeg, Frankincense and Myrrh seedlings or seeds.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2007 at 12:22AM
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grolikecrazy(6-7 UT)

Oooooh that would be so wonderful to find nutmeg, frankincense and myrrh seeds or seedlings, especially during the holiday season..
As for the vanilla beans, my dad used to yank out vanilla vines growing wild on the side of our private road in Tahiti, saying with disdain " That is a mexican one! We don't want it near our vanilla vines!"
I guess ours is Vanilla tahitiensis but someone claims to have traced its roots to the Maya forest anyhow.
, which I don't doubt, but they do smell very different, and of course I like the Tahitian vanilla best...

    Bookmark   December 14, 2008 at 4:20PM
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Hey there,

I could help ya out in obtaining some Allspice trees. I've got quite a few bare-root trees, from 6"-2' tall. I've planted quite a few of them myself and they're doing very well. Give me a shout if you're interested and we'll work out a swap or somethin!

Aloha 'n' take care,

    Bookmark   December 17, 2008 at 12:10AM
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Dave, is the Allspice easy to propagate by cuttings? At the Oahu Urban Garden Center, they have a large Allspice tree planted at the herb section of their garden. It's quite an attractive plant and provides shade from the hot sun, the smell is wonderful, too.

    Bookmark   December 22, 2008 at 1:06AM
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Not quite sure, I've never tried or looked it up! I cleared an area that was overgrown for a friend, and in amongst the weeds we uncovered hundreds of baby Allspice under the big tree. From week old sprouts to 5 feet tall! I dug a few of the medium sized ones and potted em up, doing pretty well now.

I'm an active member at DavesGarden, tons of nation-wide trading, information, etc. So I'll include a link to the info page they have for Allspice.

It gives P.H. requirements, names, general info, bloom color, size, propagation methods, plus even comments and zipcodes where its been listed to grow...pretty much anything and everything you'd need or like to know to grow any given plant. Love it.

Gotta love the smell. Mmmmm! Just to let everyone who doesn't wanna go digging through plantfiles right now know, it says under propagation methods "Direct sow as soon as the ground can be worked" So I'm not sure if it can be grown by cuttings or not, it only lists what information it has, not all of it. So it may be worth going through the net for =/

Take it light and talk with ya later,

Here is a link that might be useful: Plantfiles -

    Bookmark   December 22, 2008 at 7:44PM
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I have star anise, vanilla, patchouli, ajowan, tulsi, neem and galangal and used to have cloves and curry tree. Allspice is often used as a street tree in kailua but unfortunately don't have it yet.....Frankies nursery in waimanalo sells nutmeg, cloves and other spices and garden stores often carry the vanilla orchid in the orchid section or in the herb section.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 12:13AM
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Anyone tried California bay tree,Umbellaria?

    Bookmark   January 26, 2009 at 1:37PM
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It will grow here, but needs good drainage, does better in areas with moderate rain. Mine was well drained, but drowned in a month-long monsoon.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2009 at 3:59PM
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Aloha Dave Kauai,
My name is Natalie and I am doing trying to get a hold of plants that grows here in the islands. I been doing some research on plants ( fruits and spices and found that they are quite amazing and quite exciting. All Spice is one of them, and I had no idea there were any in hawaii grown until I search googled it. Well I do live around at least a hundred macnuts tress and lots of kona coffee trees 8 acres of them. I also have a lot of tropical gingers some I have no idea what they are lol. and I did purchase a fruit tree back in 2010 spring at a flee marketand have no idea what kind of fruit it is but it's bright yellowish and it looks like a gigantic tree with huge leaves as though it came out of an iceage movie and time. It now stands about my height 5'3" tall with white flowers and they are very hurt to the touch of your fingers because they have lots of spiny thorns that small on the leaves but large on the stems. OUCH! The leaves are about 12"s wide a shape like a christmas poincieta and it's lenght 15"s long wow huge dinosaurus tree. Fruit is a bit crunch when not fully ripened. I know it took awhile to try my best to describe this monster tree but there it is. I am trying to make a collection on the trees that grows here in hawaiifor my own personal garden. Anywa, thank you and have a blessed and wonderful week. Mahalo nui loa... Natalie love to garedn...

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 5:19PM
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