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Brazil nut

Butter nut, Cream nut, Para nut

Myrtaceac Bertholletia excelsa Humb. & Bonpl.

Source: Magness et al. 1971

The tree is very large, up to over 100 feet. It is a tropical evergreen, native to northern Brazil, with large leathery leaves, 2 feet long and 6 inches wide. The tree forms forests along the Amazon and Rio Nigro Rivers. Large quantities of nuts are gathered from such trees, but they are little cultivated. The fruits are round, about 6 inches in diameter, with a hard shell near 0.5 inch thick, which contains 18 to 24 of the 3-sided angular nuts. The shell of the individual nut is woody, rather thin, and completely filled with the white, creamy kernel. Brazil nuts are not produced commercially in the U.S., but large quantities are imported.

Last update February 18, 1999 by ch