ISI 2006-8. Adansonia za Baillon

Few gardens have the climate or space to accommodate the majestic grandeur of the African baobab, A. digitata. Nevertheless, some collectors may like to try their hand at growing this distinctive and slightly smaller relative from Madagascar’s dry forests. In fact, adansonias present few challenges to cultivation. The main requirements are good drainage, a warm monsoonal summer and good ventilation to keep spider mites from attacking the thin leaves. Spraying the foliage when watering is usually sufficient to prevent their insidious colonizations or, if already present, to eliminate them. Generous root room, full sun and ample summer water and fertilizer will hasten growth of the pachycaulous trunk. In all but tropical climates the plants must be protected from cold during winter dormancy. They can be grown in tubs that can be brought inside during winter or perhaps can even be bare-rooted for the winter and stored in a protected place. HBG 93964, plants from seeds collected Nov. 24, 2004, by Röösli & Hoffmann (3104) at Manja, Madagascar. $6.

Photo © 2006 by T. Harvey. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.

Published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal, Vol. 78 (2), March - April, 2006