The acai berry grows on a tropical palm tree native to Central and South America. These palms feature long, pale green leaves and rough, fibrous bark. The berries grow on long, vines that sprout slender stems and clusters of plump, dark blue acai berries. According to Agriculture Guide, acai berries offer health benefits such as antioxidants and numerous vitamins. When grown at home, they add a touch of the tropics to your decor and will offer a healthy boost to your diet.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Large bowl
- Warm water
- Acai seeds
- Seed flats
- Rich potting soil
- Plant heating mat
- Cling film
- Free-standing grow lamps
- Terracotta pots
- Mature compost
- River rocks
- Terracotta flood trays
Fill a large bowl with warm water and add your acai seeds. Soak the seeds for about 48 hours. This hydrates the seeds and stimulates germination. Keep the bowl in a warm place to ensure the seeds don't freeze; acai plants cannot tolerate cold.
Fill a few seed flats with rich potting soil. Soak the soil with water so its moist the whole way through, but not muddy. If you press on the soil and water pools around your finger, you've watered enough.
Sprinkle the seeds over the soil and cover them with 1.3 cm (1/2 inch) of wet soil. Cover the seed flats with loose cling film and set them on top of plant heating mats. Turn the mats on low and position a grow light over each flat. Red spikes should form in 2 to 3 weeks and small leaves should show about a month after that.
Fill a terracotta pot for each acai sprout half full with equal parts rich potting soil and compost. Saturate the mix with warm water as you did the seed flats. Gently place one seedling in each pot and cover the roots with more warm, wet soil.
Place river rocks in a flood tray for each acai seedling. Pour water over the rocks, filling the flood tray. Set one terracotta pot on each flood tray. The water will keep the area around the acai plants humid and moist.
Water your acai plants with warm water each week. Add compost to the soil about every 3 weeks. Keep the seedlings in a very warm, well-lit environment. Acai plants are tropical and require temperatures between 23.8 and 35.0 degrees C (75 and 95 degrees F).
Tips and warnings
- Do not attempt to grow acai palms outdoors unless you have a tropical-weather greenhouse or live in a tropical or subtropical climate.
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