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Entada gigas, commonly known as the monkey-ladder, sea bean, cœur de la mer or sea heart, is a species of flowering liana in the pea family, Fabaceae, that is native to Central America, the Caribbean, northern South America, and Africa. It is notable for having the family's largest seedpods,[3] 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).[4] The seeds contain a hollow cavity, which gives them buoyancy. 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.[5]

Entada gigas
Entada gigas Taub73.png
Illustration from Paul Hermann Wilhelm Taubert's Natürliche Pflanzenfamilien. Vol. III, 3
Scientific classification
E. gigas
Binomial name
Entada gigas
  • Entada gigalobium DC.
  • Entada planoseminata (De Wild.) G.C.C. Gilbert & Boutique
  • Entada planoseminata (De Wild.) G.C.C.Gilbert & Bout
  • Entada scandens (L.) Benth.
  • Entada umbonata (De Wild.) G.C.C.Gilbert & Bout
  • Entada umbonata (De Wild.) Gilbert & Boutique
  • Mimosa gigas L.
  • Mimosa scandens L.


  1. ^ "Entada gigas". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 2009-04-01.
  2. ^ The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species, retrieved 20 March 2016
  3. ^ Arbel, Ilil (2004). Amazing Plants. Courier Dover Publications. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-486-43336-3.
  4. ^ Kaplan, Eugene H. (1988). A Field Guide to Southeastern and Caribbean Seashores: Cape Hatteras to the Gulf Coast, Florida, and the Caribbean. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 148. ISBN 978-0-395-97516-9.
  5. ^ Loewer, H. Peter (2005). Seeds: the Definitive Guide to Growing, History, and Lore. Timber Press. p. 66. ISBN 978-0-88192-682-8.

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