Breadfruit is a handsome, fast-growing tropical tree that can produce more than 200 cantaloupe-sized fruits in a single season. The starchy, fragrant fruit tastes something like bread, but it’s rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and high-quality protein. It’s not surprising that breadfruit is an important source of nutrition in many parts of the world.
Breadfruit is usually propagated by taking root cuttings or shoots, which produce a tree identical to the parent plant. Other common methods include layering, in-vitro propagation or grafting. Once established, breadfruit trees require very little care. If you’re ambitious, you can definitely try growing breadfruit from seed, but keep in mind the fruit won’t develop true to type. If you’re interested in planting breadfruit seeds, read on for more information on breadfruit seed propagation.
How to Grow Breadfruit from Seed
Remove seeds from healthy, ripe breadfruit. Plant the seeds soon because they lose viability quickly and can’t be stored. Rinse the breadfruit seeds in a strainer to remove the pulp, then treat them with fungicide or soak them in a weak (2 percent) bleach solution for five to 10 minutes.
Fill a seed tray with loose, well-draining potting mix. Plant the seeds shallow to a depth of no more than twice the width of the seed. Water as needed to keep the potting mix lightly moist but never saturated. The mix should never be allowed to dry out.
Plant each seedling into an individual pot shortly after germination, which generally takes 10 to 14 days. You’ll want to continue its care in this container for at least a year, at which time you can plant the young breadfruit trees outdoors in light, well-drained soil. Look for a planting location in partial shade.
Add a handful of balanced, all-purpose fertilizer to the bottom of the hole before planting. A thin layer of mulch will help keep the soil moist and cool.