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Cacao Production: Establishment of Budwood Garden or Scion Grove

  Sacred Raw Chocolate : SolAwakening

The production of good quality cacao beans starts with the right variety or clones. It is then assured with the adoption of appropriate tree culture and farm practices, harvesting, fermentation and drying. It requires conscious effort on the part of the farmers to ensure that cacao beans meet the standard of quality required in the market.

While this concern addresses the economic and well being of a cacao farmer, he should also be responsible in assuring the well being of the future cacao farmers. The farmer's endeavor must, therefore, be hinged on the concept of sustainability and environmental accountability.
The farmer’s effort necessitates continued support primarily in terms of technology and market updates. The availability, accessibility and timeliness of such information obtained at least cost, are major enabling factors to farmers to arrive at sound farm decisions. This context emphasizes the significant role of the extension agents and the farmer-leaders as links between farmers and technology sources, as well as between farmers and the market. Thus, the extension capabilities of the extension agents and the farmer-leaders should be enhanced to help the cacao farmers maintain a steady source of income and be at the mainstream of the cacao industry.
Establishment of Budwood Garden or Scion Grove
A basic requirement to ensure successful promotion of the expansion of plantation crops like cacao is the availability of the low-cost, high quality planting materials. In cacao, planting of seedling from desirable mother trees has been a practice, but some new methods of vegetative propagation was found to give more advantages in terms of reproduction of true to type trees, more uniform growth, productivy performance, early to bear flowers, high productivity, and the clone perpetuates most if not all important characters of the original seedling mother tree like pod value, bean size, fruit wall thickness and others. Adoption of vegetative propagation requires the availability of the source of budwood materials/scions of approved and recommended varieties.
Budwood/Scion Grove Site Selection
The following are the important points to Budwood/Scion Grove Selection:
  1. Deep well-drained, porous, loamy, fertile and well aerated soil
  2. Water table must drop to not less than three feet below the surface of the ground soon after a heavy rainfall
  3. Soils should be high in organic matter which are necessary to promote satisfactory growth
  4. Should be fenced with hog and barbed wire to protect from stray and animals
  5. Should be established near the nursery
Varieties to be Used
Planting 3 to 5 varieties/clones of cacao in a farm is recommended primarily to enhance pollination. The recommended clones/varieties to be used in are preferably the following approved clones by the National Seed Industry Council (NSIC).
CC-99-05 (BR 25)
  • Reddish (red with green) pod color when still young that turns orange as it matures.
  • Leaves are elliptical in shape with wavy leafy margins.
  • Leaf length and width ratio is 11.0 cm is to 4.04 cm.
  • First flowering starts at 16.12 months and fruiting follows at 17.70 months.
  • Pod shape is Amelonado, characterized by an ovoid shape without a prominent point and with a diameter greater than 50% of the length.
  • It has superficial ridges, and a usually smooth surface, although they can be rugose in some cases with a small bottleneck.
  • Pod index is 23.1 pods/kg of dried beans. Pod length is 17.02 cm and has a width of 7.07
  • The number of beans per pod is 27 and violet in color.
  • Tolerant to insect pests and diseases.  
CC-99-05 (BR 25) pods
CC-99-05 (BR 25) Pods
  • It has elliptical leaf shape with smooth leaf margins.
  • Leaf length is 31.13 c, with a mean width of 13.44 cm.
  • It flowers at 23.20 months and bears fruit at 25.10 months.
  • Pod shape is Amelonado with a superficial ridges and a smooth surface. Rugosity also appears in some cases.
  • Pod index is 19.97 c, and has a width of about 8.67 cm.
  • Pod is red in color while still young and becomes orange when mature.
  • It has a pod wall thickness of around 1.80 cm.
  • Bean color is violet and a hundred beans weigh about 82 grams.
  • It is tolerant resistant to known insect pests and diseases.
K1 Pods
  • Leaf shape is elliptical with smooth leaf margins.
  • Leaf length is 32.73 cm with a mean of 12.52 cm.
  • If flowers at 21.10 months and bears fruit after three months or a 24.12 months.
  • Pod shape is Amenolado and is red in color while still young and becomes yellow/orange when mature.
  • It has a pod wall thickness of around 1.40 cm with 34 beans per pod.
  • Pod index is 25 pods/kg of dried beans.
  • It is tolerant resistant to known insect pests and diseases.
K2 Pods
CC-99-02 (UIT 1)
  • It has an elliptical leaf shape with wavy leaf margin.
  • Leaf length and width ration 22.36 cm is 8.13 cm.
  • If flowers at the age of 16.80 months in the stage of first fruiting.
  • Pod shape is Cundeamor. Pod length is 20.07 cm and width of 8.65 cm.
  • Pod is yellow when old from the original color of green when still young with wall thickness of 1.02 cm.
  • Bean is violet in color.
  • Canopy diameter is 278 cm.
  • Pod index is 14 pods/kg of dried beans
  • Tolerant resistant to insect pests and diseases.
UIT1 Trinitario cacao fruit/pod.
CC-99-01 (ICS 40)
  • Leaf shape is elliptical with wavy leaf margin.
  • Leaf length and width ratio is 29.95 cm is to 10.01 cm.
  • Starts to flower at the age of 17.63 months and fruiting follows at 19.63 months.
  • Pod shape is Cundeamor described as a variety with elongated cylindrical fruit with ridges, a rugose surface, pronounced bottleneck and sharp point.
  • Pod length and width ratio is 165.02 cm is to 9.45 cm.
  • Pod color is green when young and turns yellow when mature with wall thickness of 1.35 cm.
  • Pod index is 16.2 pods/kg with 44 beans per pod. Canopy diameter is 195 cm.
  • Bean is striped.
  • Moderately resistant to insect pests and diseases.
ICS40 (Trinitario) Cacao Fruit/Pod
ICS40 (Trinitario) Cacao Fruit/Pod
  • Newly released variety by NSIC
  • Has big beans (approx. 80 dry beans/100 grams)
  • Has good yielding ability
  • Good pest resistance
  • With high butter content
UF-18 Pods
UF-18 Pods
Computation for Number of Seedlings Propagated over time
The following are the considerations for the computation for number of seedlings propagated over time.
  1. Distance of planting is 3 x 3 m planted in quincunx method.
  2. Approximately a 144 sq. m area (one block) can be planted to 41 plants. Distance between blocks is 2 meters.
  3. A hectare of land can accommodate 49 blocks multiplied by 41 plants per block equals 2, 009 plants per hectare (round off to 2,000 plants per hectare)
  4. Six months after planting, each plant can produce approximately three fan branches with five buds/scion per branch to be used for top/cleft grafting method. 2 fan branches x 2 scion per branch x 2000 plants/hectare equals 8,000 available scions/hectare in six months.
  5. After one year, 16 fan branches will be developed containing 2 scions per branch or approximately 50 buds/scion per plant multiplied to 2,000 plants per hectare equals 32, 000 available scions per hectare.
  6. Two years after 50 fan branches (average 25) will be developed per plant containing 2 scions per branch multiplied to 2000 plants per hectare equals 200, 000 scions available per hectare per year up to 10 to 15 years.
Maintenance of Budwood Garden or Scion Grove
The Burwood Garden/Scion Grove can be utilized for linger period of time (10-15 years) when it is properly maintained. Periodic pruning is needed to remove unwanted branches especially those that are weak and small which are not good materials for propagation. Removal of fruits that develop from the main stem and branches is also necessary for proper growth and development of the plant.

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