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Growing Brazil Nut Trees

By Bryan Ordman
Brazil nuts are used in a variety of dishes around the world.
brazil nuts image by Alison Bowden from Fotolia.com

Brazil nut trees are exclusive to the Amazonian rain forests of South America. The process of growing a Brazil nut tree can require quite an investment of time and can take between 10 and 20 years to begin producing actual Brazil nuts. Brazil nut trees need to have a nearly perfect ecological setting in order to grow properly and produce the Brazil nuts which are highly sought after. In fact, an intricate balance is necessary between the tree, a species of bees, orchids and a certain type of rodent.

Growing a Brazil Nut Tree

Brazil trees typically grow along the Amazon River.
phillipine river view - loboc river image by Paul O'Hearn from Fotolia.com

Locate a large undisturbed portion of Amazonian rain forest along the Amazonian River basin in South America, as the trees grow to be quite thick and over 100 feet tall.

In nature, the large agouti rat is the only species able to crack a Brazil nut open with its teeth.
mouse image by timur1970 from Fotolia.com

Locate a Brazil tree fruit, which resembles a cantaloupe, and crack it open to gain access to its seedlings.

The rain forest's fragile ecosystem must be preserved to ensure proper growth of the Brazil nut tree.
Field prepared for new planting image by Dragan Trifunovic from Fotolia.com

Plant the Brazil nut tree seedlings. Monitor the growth of the trees over the coming years to ensure an undisturbed ecosystem.

The United States imports nearly nine tons of Brazil nuts each  year.
Brazil Nuts image by TMLP from Fotolia.com

Introduce orchids near the tree once it begins to grow in order to attract a special species of "orchid bees" to naturally pollinate the tree and stimulate growth of the tree, its fruit and nuts.


Things You Will Need

  • Undisturbed Amazonian rain forest area
  • Brazil tree fruit
  • Brazil nut tree seeds
  • Orchids
  • Orchid bees

About the Author


Bryan Ordman is a film school graduate of Columbia College Chicago and has been working as a freelance writer since 2007. His primary focus while attending college was screenwriting. He has written in the past primarily as a film columnist but is now regular writer for eHow and Answerbag. Ordman obtained his Bachelor of Arts from Columbia College Chicago in 2008.