Friday, 5 June 2015

Monkey Cacao

Image: Andreas Kay
Monkey Cacao? Isn't there rather more of the squid about this one?

Image: Andreas Kay
Monkey Cacaos are a bunch of trees belonging to the genus Herrania and found in the rainforests of South and Central America.

Image: Andreas Kay
They're quite small by rainforest standards, only reaching about 3 metres (10 feet) tall or so. Luckily, they thrive perfectly well in the shade of the towering canopy above them.

Image: Andreas Kay
I'm sure a bit of shade helps their flowers, too. They're clearly devilish creatures of the night who've somehow found themselves attached to a tree.

Image: Dick Culbert
These flowers grow directly from the trunk. They begin as bulbs which crack open as the creature within sends out peculiar tendrils into the world outside.

Image: wundoroo
Soon the flowers fully emerge, accompanied by an entourage of bizarre tentacles...

Image: Pavel Kirillov
And perhaps a small infestation of beetles. Suits them!

Image: Reinaldo Aguilar
Later the flowers are replaced by what look a lot like the most important fruits in the world. Turns out they're not the most important fruits in the world, but Monkey Cacaos are indeed related to Theobroma cacao, the Cocoa or Cacao Tree, from which we get chocolate.

They're even edible! Needless to say, they're not as tasty or chocolatey as chocolate. Everything is made better by the presence of tentacles and I guess choco-fruits coming from a tentacle-flower would simply be too perfect to be contained within this world.


Porakiya Draekojin said...

Well, at least they don't attack anyone with those tentacles ;)

Crunchy said...

Boosh! And/or, cacao.

TexWisGirl said...

quite pretty and scary at the same time!

Joseph Jameson-Gould said...

@Porakiya Draekojin: Oh, if this thing was carnivorous too... Gosh!

@Crunchy: Through the miracle of youtube, I know what you're talking about!

@TexWisGirl: Yeah, strange tightrope to walk down!

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