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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Carolina allspice produced pods -- what now?

My Carolina Allspice bush produced seed pods this year. I collected them already brown and let them dry out, then cracked one open and found this:
Carolina Allspice pods/seeds
Carolina Allspice pods/seeds
The pod left spicy fragrance -- eucalyptus or clove like maybe? -- on my hand. Any idea what if anything can be done with them?
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User avatar
applestar
Mod
Posts: 27803
Joined: Thu May 01, 2008 11:21 pm
Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Carolina allspice produced pods -- what now?

OK quick search yielded that the seeds are toxic and also needs up to 3 mo cold stratification to grow if they had been dried on the shrub, so I went out and poked some in a couple of small containers that had tomatoes in them (just yanked out the dead sticks - nothing fancy) and left them near the downspout where hopefully they won't dry out. Also tossed a few seeds where it would be OK for them to volunteer if they do, and put one of the little containers in the garage with the dormant overwintering plants.

Next year, I'll try harvesting some twigs and bark -- supposed to be similar to cinnamon when dried and ground. "small amount of camphor" in the bark according to PFAF which explains the eucalyptus-like fragrance.

I kept the pods -- I think I'll break them up and use them in potpourri in case toxic compounds are concentrated in the pod (no mention of the pods so far in my search). ...Changed my mind and made a single-ingredient anti-clothes moth sachet for now -- seemed like a good idea with the camphor content and I'll be able to divide it out if I wanted to later.

Now I have 10 seeds left. What to do.... I really should put more effort into learning to/experimenting with propagating trees and shrubs, but I'm not sure if I'm up to it right now. I collected several Tulip tree cones last year without doing anything, and this year, I have a little collection of Halesia/silver bell seed pods that are maybe too late to plant. Tree seeds usually need to be planted right away :?
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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