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Cacao Theobroma & Chocolate

Pop quiz time!

1. What is cacao and where does it come from?

2. When did this plant become so prominent in our diets?

3. How does it grow and what are cacao’s growing needs?

4. Bonus question: Why don’t chocolate bars grow on trees?

If you’re curious about the answers to these questions and want to learn about cacao from a true professional who used to grow cacao in Hawaii, then you don’t want to miss this class! Conservatory Horticulturist, Jayton Howard, will have you feeling like an expert by the end of class. As part of the cacao experience, you’ll get the chance to taste chocolate in a whole new way. We’ll snack on cacao nibs, feel the benefits of cacao butter on our skin, and see what a fresh cacao pod is like inside and out! We’ll compare tasty chocolates with the taste of raw cacao fruit and develop our pallets to a whole level of chocolate appreciation.

Think you have what it takes to grow cacao as a house plant? You’ll get the opportunity to plant a fresh cacao bean and watch it emerge into a baby cacao tree in a matter of weeks and learn everything you need to keep it growing. Jayton will also provide an exclusive guided tour of some of the Conservatory’s tropical plants, with special focus on our cacao tree. Due to the limited blooming cycle of our cacao tree and planned construction on the Conservatory coming in 2025, this is the last chance to take this class for a while!

Fees: Member $37, Non-Member $44

All programs are subject to change. Pre-registration through our website is required.

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden strives to be a Garden for all and we are committed to offering diverse adult learning opportunities that are inclusive and accessible to all learners. If you would like to request an accommodation to support your participation in an adult learning opportunity at the Garden, please contact [email protected] or call 804-262-9887 x328 and we will make our best effort to help.

Register Member $37

Register Non-Member $44

Saturday, June 15, 2024
1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Event Details

Jayton HowardAbout the Instructor

Jayton Howard grew up in Oregon working at his mother’s flower shop, had the privilege of studying horticulture in Australia where he also managed a garden shop for 5 years, then moved to Hawaii to specialize in tropical growing where he managed wholesale nursery operations as well as a cacao and coffee farm. Now he is here in Richmond at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden as the Conservatory Horticulturist where he gets to keep the tropical lifestyle alive.