Myristica, the nutmeg tree

La nutmeg It is a dried fruit that is becoming very fashionable lately for its digestive and analgesic properties. But what tree produces it and how is it grown?

At Gardening On we want to keep you informed of everything related to plants, and this time it will not be less. After reading this article, you will know everything about nutmeg and its parent 😉.

Myristica, the nutmeg tree


In tropical regions like the Caribbean, Indonesia or New Guinea, we find a genus of trees called Myristica. These are evergreen tree plants (that is, they remain evergreen) that reach heights between 5 and 20 meters. The leaves are dark green, about 15cm long by 7cm wide.

Conclusion dioecious species, that is, there are male flowers and female flowers in different specimens, although both are very similar: they are bell-shaped and pale yellow. The only difference is that the masculine ones are arranged in groups of one to ten, while the feminine ones are arranged in groups of one to three.

The fruit, the nutmeg, is ovoid or pear-shaped. It is about 10cm long and about 5cm in diameter. The shell is fleshy, and inside there is a purple-brown seed about 3cm long by 2cm in diameter.

How is it grown?

Being a plant of tropical origin, its cultivation outside is only recommended in climates without frost. If you are lucky enough to live in an area where temperatures are mild or warm throughout the year and you would like to grow it, take note:

  • Location: in full sun or in semi-shade.
  • Irrigation: frequent, preventing the soil from drying out before watering.
  • Land: fertile, with good drainage.
  • Subscriber: during the warmer months it should be paid with organic fertilizers, such as guano or worm castings.
  • Planting time: in spring.
  • Multiplication: by seeds in spring and by woody cuttings in late winter.

Uses of nutmeg


Nutmeg it is used mainly in the kitchen, in potato stews and meat dishes. Also for seasoning soups, sauces, croquettes and baked dishes, and for seasoning.

By having analgesic and digestive properties, can be used as medicinal, but never continuously as it can pose a significant health risk. Therefore, you should never add more than 10 grams of its extract because otherwise we could have vomiting, general pain and / or psychotic pictures.

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  1.   Julius Caesar said

    Hello, I have two fields and some planted trees (Oak, Grebilea, Willow, Espinillo), but the earth is very hard and if I water a lot it puddles and does not absorb, I plant a liquidambar and it does not grow, its leaves turn yellow and wrinkle. What I can do ? Atte Julio

    1.    Monica Sanchez said

      Hi July.
      I would recommend planting other types of trees, such as carob (Ceratonia siliqua), fig tree (ficus carica), almond tree (Almond), melia (Melia sourach).

      For the liquidambar I advise you to fertilize it with a fertilizer for acid plants, since it may also be lacking in iron.

      A greeting.