Commonly known as the monkey-ladder, sea bean, cœur de la mer or sea heart, Entada gigas is a species of flowering liana in the pea family, Fabaceae.
It is native to Central America, the Caribbean, northern South America, and Africa.
The monkey-ladder is notable for having the family's largest seedpods, which measure 12 cm (4.7 in) across and can reach 2 m (6.6 ft) in length.
Inside the pods are ten to fifteen seeds, each of which have a diameter of 6 cm (2.4 in) and a thickness of 2 cm (0.79 in). The seeds contain a hollow cavity, which gives them buoyancy.
These are in our Sea Beans Set.
After being washed by rain into rivers and then the ocean, the seeds of E. gigas drift long distances on ocean currents. Seed buoyancy and vitality lasts at least two years.
The sea beans can travel for thousands of miles and are said to have mystical powers.
If these drift seeds could talk, imagine the stories they could tell....
Picture by Melissa Collier