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Pachypodium namaquanum


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Pachypodium namaquanum

Family: Apocynaceae

Common names: elephant’s trunk, halfmens.

It is native to the arid, rocky mountains of the Richtersveld in the Northern Cape and southern Namibia. It is a tree-like succulent devoid of branches, with a spiny trunk and a mop of leaves on top. Growing to a height of about 2m, halfmens have swollen succulent stems which they use for storing water in this parched desert region. The top part of the trunk (the apex) is usually covered with a rosette of crinkly green leaves which fall off in summer.

Sowing instructions: Seeds can be sown in the summer using a mixture of river sand and sifted compost or bark at a ratio of 1:1. After germination, care should be taken not to over-water as this encourages rot and fungal infestations. Keep plants well ventilated, in good light and dry plants out in the dormant season which is summer.

Locality: Ex Hort. Harvest: February 2023