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Eastern Cape dwarf cycad

Encephalartos caffer

This Dwarf cycad is indigenous to grassveld habitats of the Eastern Cape coastal districts. It has a subterranean stem with only the apex of the crown visible. Leaves are olive-green and 40 - 90 cm in length. Female cones are cylindrical, lime-green, 30 cm in length and produce red seeds.

Planning

Difficulty
Moderate
Fruiting time
Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter

Harvesting

Harvest seed when mature and starting to loosen from the cone.

Propagation

Seed
Sow fresh mature seed in sandy soil.
Suckers
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.

Special features

Geography

Origin
South Africa, Eastern Cape
Natural climate
Warm summers, cool winters

Environment

Light
Full Sun
Soil moisture
Moist
Soil type
Loam
Soil PH preference
Neutral
Frost hardiness
Hardy

Uses

Edible
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!
Notes
Ornamental

Personality

Family
Zamiaceae
Flower colour
Scent
None

Problems

Generally problem free.

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