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Albany cycad

Encephalartos latifrons

Broodboom (Afr.)

The endangered Albany cycad is indigenous to the Bathurst and Albany districts of the Eastern Cape. The tall-growing cycad is characterised by 1,5 m curving foliage and a skirt of orange-brown dead leaves. Leaves are a glossy-green. The female cone is egg-shaped, 50 - 60 cm in length, and produces red seeds.

Planning

Difficulty
Advanced
Fruiting time
Summer, Autumn, Winter, Spring

Harvesting

Harvest seed when mature(color)

Propagation

Seed
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.
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, Bathurst and Albany districts
Natural climate
Coastal areas with hot summers and cold 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

Few, but include mealy bug and scale insects. Good drainage will prevent fungal diseases.

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