Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Cocoplum
Chrysobalanus icaco

Family: Chrysobalanaceae
Genus: Chrysobalanus (kry-soh-BAL-an-us) (Info)
Species: icaco (eye-KAH-koh) (Info)

10 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)
12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)
15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)
20-30 ft. (6-9 m)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
24-36 in. (60-90 cm)
36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)
10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)
12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Blooms all year


Other details:
Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From woody stem cuttings
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

Click thumbnail
to view:

By NativePlantFan9
Thumbnail #1 of Chrysobalanus icaco by NativePlantFan9

By Equilibrium
Thumbnail #2 of Chrysobalanus icaco by Equilibrium

By IslandJim
Thumbnail #3 of Chrysobalanus icaco by IslandJim

By IslandJim
Thumbnail #4 of Chrysobalanus icaco by IslandJim

By IslandJim
Thumbnail #5 of Chrysobalanus icaco by IslandJim

By IslandJim
Thumbnail #6 of Chrysobalanus icaco by IslandJim


3 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive handbright On Nov 1, 2006, handbright from Coral Springs, FL (Zone 10b) wrote:

I have this plant as hedging material around my garden. I also have seen it nearly wild in the Los Angeles area, which is much drier than here of course. The plants in California were alive with birds. Here, not so much. (10b) It makes a wonderful hedge with a bronzy glow in the silky feeling leaves of new growth that is very attractive in the landscape. 4 stars for this one.

Neutral kay13 On Oct 5, 2006, kay13 from Indiantown, FL wrote:

can anyone tell me if this plant coco plum is poisionous to horses ? I want to use it for a privacy hedge between my property and the neighbors but I have horses and wanted to know before I plant it if is toxic to equines

Positive IslandJim On Feb 6, 2006, IslandJim from Keizer, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

I think this plant has some potential to become a minor subtropical fruit, but obviously needs a breeding/hybridizing effort to improve the pulp-to-pit ratio and increase the overall size of the fruit. As it is, the fruit is sweet with a delicate plum-like flavor. Seed kernels are also edible when roasted.

Positive NativePlantFan9 On Dec 8, 2004, NativePlantFan9 from Boca Raton, FL (Zone 10a) wrote:

Cocoplum is one of the best native shrubs in Florida. It is native to the cypress swamps, hammocks, wet areas, tree islands and coastal natural habitats such as hammocks and also is abundant in swamps, including hardwood swamps, from central Florida southward throughout the state, including the Keys. It is also found in coastal habitats. It is an excellent subtropical shrub that produces edible, black to purplish berries that are very useful and superb for wildlife and birds. Also, in it's natural habitats the foilage may provide some shelter for wildlife as well. People may also eat them as well when ripe. It is very common and very popular in the landscape in its entire range in central and southern Florida as a maintained shrub. It is superb for a maintained shrub - a superb characteristic for a native plant - and can be maintained as low as 3 to 4 feet tall! It is hardy from zone 9a southward, it's northernmost range limit. It is abundant in swamps, hammocks, and wet areas and tree islands in the Everglades, one of it's preferred natural habitats, where it is found as a tall shrub. It has small, white flowers that bloom often but are somewhat inconspicuous.

MORE FACTS - Grows naturally up to 14 or 15 feet tall and sometimes up to 20 feet as a tall shrub. Useful as a hedge. The blackish to purplish berries (cocoa-plums or icacoa-plums) are great for wildlife and are edible for people to taste. Somewhat drought-tolerant as well, but must be watered moderately to frequently - soil usually must be slightly moist. Great for coastal situations as well as the rest of the way inland. This plant is very useful as a hedge and is being widely used in both commercial landscaping projects and housing developments in south Florida, as well as a border for homes.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Beverly Hills, California
Boca Raton, Florida
Fort Myers, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Jupiter, Florida
Key West, Florida
Kissimmee, Florida
Lake Worth, Florida
Oldsmar, Florida
Pompano Beach, Florida
Port Charlotte, Florida
Sarasota, Florida
Tampa, Florida
Tavernier, Florida
Venice, Florida
West Palm Beach, Florida

We recommend Firefox
Overwhelmed? There's a lot to see here. Try starting at our homepage.

[ Home | About | Advertise | Media Kit | Mission | Featured Companies | Submit an Article | Terms of Use | Tour | Rules | Privacy Policy | Contact Us ]

Back to the top

Copyright © 2000-2015 Dave's Garden, an Internet Brands company. All Rights Reserved.

Hope for America