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Chrysobalanus icaco

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Title: Chrysobalanus icaco  
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Subject: Montagne Glacis Important Bird Area, Cuban pine forests, Horr's Island archaeological site, Tropical fruit, Mahé highlands and surrounding areas Important Bird Area
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Chrysobalanus icaco

Chrysobalanus icaco
Chrysobalanus icaco leaves and flowers
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Chrysobalanaceae
Genus: Chrysobalanus
Species: C. icaco
Binomial name
Chrysobalanus icaco
(L.) L.
  • Chrysobalanus atacorensis A.Chev.
  • Chrysobalanus chariensis A.Chev.
  • Maba sudanensis A.Chev.
  • Chrysobalanus purpureus Mill.
  • Chrysobalanus pellocarpus G.Mey.
  • Chrysobalanus ellipticus Sol. ex Sabine
  • Chrysobalanus luteus Sabine
  • Chrysobalanus orbicularis Schumach.
  • Chrysobalanus guianensis Klotzsch
  • Chrysobalanus stuhlmannii Engl.
  • Chrysobalanus savannarum Britton
  • Chrysobalanus interior Small

Chrysobalanus icaco, the cocoplum, Paradise Plum and icaco, is found near sea beaches and inland throughout tropical Africa, tropical Americas and the Caribbean, and in southern Florida and the Bahamas.[1] The inland subspecies is Chrysobalanus icaco pellocarpus.


  • Description 1
  • See also 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4


Chrysobalanus icaco is a shrub 1–3 metres (3.3–9.8 ft), or bushy tree 2–6 metres (6.6–19.7 ft), rarely to 10 metres (33 ft). It has evergreen broad-oval to nearly round somewhat leathery leaves (3 to 10 cm long and 2.5 to 7 cm wide). Leaf colors range from green to light red. The bark is greyish or reddish brown, with white specks.

The flowers are small, white, in clusters, appearing in late spring. In late summer it bears fruit in clusters, that of the coastal form being round, up to 5 cm in diameter, pale-yellow with rose blush or dark-purple in color, while that of the inland form is oval, up to 2.5 cm long, and dark-purple.

The coastal form is highly tolerant of salt, so it is often planted to stabilize beach edges and prevent erosion.

Chrysobalanus icaco is also planted as an ornamental shrub. The tree is unable to survive a hard frost. The fruit is edible with a mildly sweet flavor and is sometimes used for jam. The common name for this fruit in Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana is "fat pork".

Fruit of the coastal form
Red leaves on the inland form

See also


  1. ^ a b Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families

Bush, Charles S. and Morton, Julia F. (1969) Native Trees and Plants for Florida Landscaping (pp. 64–65). Bulletin No. 193. Department of Agriculture - State of Florida.

External links

  • (coco plum)Chrysobalanus icacoUSDA Plants Profile for
  • at Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)Chrysobalanus icaco
  • Cocoplum at Virginia Tech Dendrology
  • Dressler, S.; Schmidt, M. & Zizka, G. (2014). "Chrysobalanus icaco". African plants – a Photo Guide. Frankfurt/Main: Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg. 
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