Macadamia, in general, is a species of plant that includes 14 types , which includes the best-known macadamia tree, which is originally from Australia.
This species of plants was named in honor of the secretary of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria , named Marc Adamiam . However, the characterization or creation of this new species was determined by the German geographer and botanist Ferdinand von Mueller, who published his study in 1857 in Transactions of the Philosophical Institute of Victoria.
When discovered, this species was only found in eastern Australia , as well as in New Caledonia, Indonesia and the Celebes Islands, in addition to two other species found in China.
Currently, the macadamia tree can be grown in Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Guatemala, Paraguay, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, South Africa and even Madagascar.
It should be noted that the cultivation of this tree reached the Peruvian territory thanks to a program called the Cooperation Fund for Social Development.
What is the macadamia tree?
As well, as we have been pointing out, this tree can be obtained much more easily than during the years of its discovery, since its cultivation has expanded. Similarly, there are places where this same crop is more profitable or productive , because there is a greater demand for the fruits of the macadamia tree.
But well, in itself, the macadamia tree is an arboreal plant that can grow 2 to 12 meters tall. This has elongated leaves that are 6 to 30 centimeters long and 2 to 12 centimeters wide. As you can see, the size can be very varied, this will depend on the type of macadamia in question, because –as we already said- there are 14 types of this plant.
Similarly, the fruit produced by this tree is the macadamia nut , which can also be known under the name of bush nut, maroochi nut, Queensland nut, and colloquially in the Australian area it can be called kindal kindal or jindilli.
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Scientific name of the macadamia tree
Like any plant, or element of the kingdom Plantae, the macadamia tree has its scientific terminology, which is: Macadamia integrifolia or Macadamia tetraphylla , which are the only two species that produce edible nuts or fruits. The other species are poisonous .
This plant belongs to the proteaceous family, which constitutes the Grevilleoideae subfamily, where the Macadamieae tribe is found.
Origin of the macadamia tree
This tree is native to Australia, the aborigines who populated this territory already used it for medicinal and nutritional purposes long before the English settlers were interested in the species, which was in 1828 when an English botanist named Allan Cunningham began to study it. and later its cultivation began to specialize. Which would give way to more studies regarding the species.
Macadamia tree characteristics
The conventional macadamia tree is not very large , in fact, it is considered a shrub, it consists of hermaphrodite flowers that are located by axillary clusters up to 30 centimeters long, these are yellowish-white. The leaves of this tree are also elongated and not very wide.
This tree is grown mostly in areas that have a warm climate , especially subtropical. It is in greater demand for its fruit in the areas of Australia, California and Hawaii, although Costa Rica also has a large part of the cultivation of the macadamia nut.
How is the macadamia tree grown?
This tree has an average slow growth when planted in areas where temperatures are below 15 degrees Celsius . The best are hot climates without major changes in temperature, preferably subtropical.
This tree can withstand a variation in the climate , with the exception of low temperatures or so-called “frosts”.
With respect to the ground, this tree can adapt to any surface , but it is always better if the soil has good drainage and that it is light. It is a very tolerant species of soil salinity and it is best if it is a terrain that exposes it to the sun, but protects it from the winds.
To plant this tree you must have a minimum space of 8 × 8 meters , ideally a space of 10 × 10. For its part, the hole where it is planted must be at least 60cm and have a good mix of fertilizer (manure, bone meal …).
This tree doesn’t demand a lot of water , only normal and it is recommended that the planting be done on a cloudy day, since the sun could excessively dry this process.
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Macadamia tree care
One of the most essential care that a plant needs is to be pruned , since this helps it to eliminate the parts that are deteriorated and thus can grow stronger.
In the case of the macadamia tree, a pruning is required at least once a year , which is not very demanding, such as its irrigation that does not require it to be excessive, but rather the appropriate one. We simply have to ensure that it is in a sunny area and that the wind does not play against its growth.
Macadamia integrifolia tree
Macadamia integrifolia is the most common species of this tree , from which the macadamia tetraphylla derives ,or, rather, the latter is a hybrid species of macadamia integrifolia.
These species, both, are the only ones that can produce edible nuts , since the other types of macadamia produce fruits with a highly toxic substance that can be poisonous.
Thus, the macadamia integrifolia is the one that originated in eastern Australia, its characteristics are those previously described . More than a tree, it is a shrub, it produces flowers that develop in elongated clusters and its leaves are also long and thin.
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