The Kei cycad is indigenous to the eastern Cape, and specifically to the Kei River catchment area. Leaves are blue-green, maturing to a grey-green. Female cones are barrel-shaped and 30 - 40 cm in length and produce red seeds.
Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
Harvest seed when mature and colored.
Naked seeds grow on female plants and need pollen from male plants to be fertile. Sow fresh fertile seeds in sandy soil and keep warm and moist. Germination can take 1-3 months.
Allow suckers to grow attached to the motherplant for about two years until they have enough reserves to survive on their own. Remove with a clean cut and use flowers-of-sulphar to help the wounds to heal.
South Africa, Eastern Cape, Kei-river
Soil PH preference
The Afrikaans name 'Broodboom' came from the traditional use of the pith as bread - note that Cycads is toxic and it needs a 3month fermentation process to break down those toxins!