Cola nut: cultivation, properties and care

A difficult plant, but with interesting characteristics and properties. Discover everything you need to know about Cola acuminata and its fruit.

Last update: 08 October, 2022

The kola nut is native to Africa and is considered exotic by many. both for its origins and for its properties. tail acuminate Y sudan nut These are other names by which the fruit of the cola tree is known, which can be reddish or white inside.

The name may sound familiar to you. Perhaps it is due to the famous drink Coca-Cola?

Yes, this nut is part of the original soda recipe and is used to add caffeine. We tell you much more here.

What is the kola nut?

The kola nut is a tree native to tropical Africa, its flowers are white, with large fruits of an intense green color. The fruit has a high content of caffeine and theobromine, the same ones found in coffee, tea and chocolate.

The seeds are considered stimulants. However, the Sudan nut tree, which comes from the Malvaceae family, is not the only thing that is being used to its advantage. Thanks to the flexibility and resistance of its wood, it is used for construction.

This plant has different varieties. In addition, it requires moisture and very fertile soil to grow, so it needs to be in a place that has moisture throughout the year.

Without being coffee, this plant contains caffeine and exerts stimulating effects when consumed.

Characteristics and properties of Cola acuminata

Some of the reasons this nut is so sought after are due to its stimulating properties. It has a high caffeine content (a little more than coffee). So it is one of the ingredients to make soft drinks.

Apart from this attribute, the pharmacology also seems to be of interest, since there is scientific evidence that it has tannins, antioxidant and antimicrobial properties. Traditional medicine also considers that it has a diuretic and digestive effect, which is observed in a study carried out on rodents by the International Journal of Physiology, Pathophysiology and Pharmacology.

Among its active ingredients are the following:

  • Alkaloid bases: caffeine, theobromine and theophylline.
  • Tannins: catechol, epicatechol, phlobaphens and potassium salts.

Current growing area

The largest crop is produced in Africa. To be more precise, in equatorial Africa (Zambia, Angola, Chad). In fact, 70% of the cola nut export comes from Nigeria.

However, its plantation has also been extended to countries with a similar climate, in other tropical areas, such as the Caribbean or Brazil. There, the humidity remains constant. Thus, despite being a native fruit of Africa, it can grow in various countries.

General tips for growing kola nut

The Sudan nut is very demanding, it requires specific conditions to grow healthy and strong. However, it is possible to recreate the environment. We explain what you should take into account.


A tropical climate is an essential requirement. The average temperature throughout the year should range from 22 to 28 degrees Celsius, with continuous rainy periods and relative humidity above 80%.

It can grow in semi-shaded areas, in direct sunlight or in wooded areas. However, what must be constant is the humid weather.

soil type

The main condition is that the soil must have the ability to retain moisture and the nutrients that the plant needs. In addition, it must contain considerable levels of organic matter, be slightly acidic and have a clay texture.

Despite creating the perfect conditions for the tree, it is usually slow growing. To bear its first fruit, it can take around 5 years, which is when it reaches maturity.

By seed multiplication

Seed is a good option because it offers a high germination rate. Fortunately, it does not have a difficult procedure. If you want to reproduce the plant by this method, you just have to make sure to plant it in a pot with peat substrate, keep it moist and warm.

It usually germinates between 15 and 21 days. When the seedlings come out, you must continue with the humidity and put them in a semi-shaded place. You can only transplant it when it has grown more than 30 centimeters.

The fruits of the cola tree have a particular appearance that resembles stones or nuts.

Where to get the cola nut?

You could ask at any supermarket or nursery. If you can’t find it, you can find it for sale on-line. This fruit can be consumed in various ways; in drinks or sweets are the most common ways.

You already have all the data. What are you waiting for to start home cultivation?

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