Saturday, July 18, 2020

Cycad: 1x Encephalartos transvensosus - Modjadji cycad - Cycad Palm No Seeds


As a garden subject, Encephalartos transvenosus, with its glossy dark-green leaves, is one of the most spectacular and tallest of all cycad species. It is also one of the fastest growing, the seedlings growing rapidly and developing into an attractive garden plant with 1-m long leaves in four to five years.

The stem reaches a height of 12 to13 m and 0.4-0.45 m in diameter. Typical of the species is the appearance of numerous dormant buds along the base of the stem. The new leaves are light green covered with fine brown hairs, while the mature leaves develop to from 1.5 to 2.5 m in length and are dark green and glossy. The leaflets, attached to the leaf stalk, are 160-250 x 25-45 mm, but reduce in size closer to the base of the leaf stalk. The leaflets overlap and a distinguishing feature is that these leaflets are reflexed from the leaf stalk.

This species is regarded as a tree as it develops to a height of 6 to 8 m or more with a leaf spread of up to 5 m. Being a gymnosperm, these plants produce cones. They are dioecious, which means male and female cones are produced on separate plants. Male cones develop to a length of 300-400 mm; the female cones are very large and heavy. The cones are golden brown in colour and are produced in late summer, weighing more than 40 kg.

Generally cycads are regarded to be slow-growing; however, given ideal growing conditions, this species will, in five years, develop into a worthwhile garden subject with leaves of at least a metre in length. All cycads are regarded as being long-lived, surviving for hundreds of years.

Conservation Status
From a conservation point of view this species is regarded as not being threatened.

Distribution and habitat
The Modjadji cycad is native to South Africa, occurring in the Letaba District of Mpumalanga at an altitude of 600-1 000 m. A rainfall greater than 1 500 mm a year is experienced in the region, with frequent mists providing cool, humid summers. The region is frost-free.

Derivation of name and historical aspects
This species was described in 1926. The Rain Queens (Modjadji) of the Lovedu region have protected this locally common species for centuries. The specific name transvenosus refers to the network of veins which can be seen when a leaf is held up against the light.

This species is closely related to E. paucidentatus ; however, it can be easily identified as its leaflets are broader than those of E. paucidentatus. The genus is restricted to Africa and consists of approximately 69 species.

Porcupines are known to ring-bark cycads in some areas and, if accessible, the cones are destroyed by the porcupines when they strip the cones of their succulent cone scales. Baboons occassionally break off the immature cones. The Leopard Magpie moth larva is capable of destroying the newly sprouted leaves of a cycad. Certain seed-eating snout beetles, of which there are a number of species, can in the case of a heavy infestation, destroy an entire seed crop. The attractive, brightly coloured seeds attract squirrels, baboons, monkeys and dassies. Some birds such as louries, parrots and trumpeter hornbills are also attracted to the seeds. Only the soft tissue covering the seed is eaten and the kernel is then discarded.

In the past, the pith from the stem of cycads was removed, then enclosed in an animal skin, fermented and ground into a meal which was used to make bread, hence the Afrikaans name broodboom = bread tree. Cycads develop into attractive feature plants and E. transvenosus is a particularly attractive species, provided it has sufficient space and ideal growing conditions.

Growing Encephalartos transvenosus
This species is one of the most attractive of the larger cycad species and responds well to cultivation in frost-free areas, with regular watering in the dry months. Good drainage is essential and protection from sun in very hot areas will help to prevent the leaves from burning.

Adapts well to full sun or light shade and prefers a sheltered position providing protection from the prevailing winds. When young they can be grown as a container plant and eventually transplanted into the garden. This species transplants easily as a mature plant, although it is recommended to remove all the leaves before doing so. This makes for easier handling and the plant will recover sooner due to less moisture loss. Irrigation systems can be detrimental to cycads, damaging the leaves and stems from the pressure of the water as well as over-watering.

Price: € 19
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Encephalartos senticosus - Cycad Palm No Seeds


Locality: This species can be found in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and in the Lebombo mountains, Swaziland. There are also isolated populations reported in Mozambique along the border of Swaziland. This species is found in a variety of different habitats: from grasslands, to forests, to rocky hills and slopes, to sheer cliffs. The areas in which they are found are arid to semi-arid.

Plant Size: This is a medium to large sized species. The leaves on this species get about two meters long, and stems can reach heights of about four meters. This species can produce basal suckers, but generally not heavily.

Other Characteristics: This species is a beautiful green leafed cycad. It is a fairly fast grower and crowns tend to bee full and lush. This species is similar in its appearance to both Encephalartos lebomboensis (which this species shares habitat) and Encephalartos natalensis. Some of the key differences that can be observed is that E. senticosus have wooly apical crowns and female cones. The spination of the leaflets varies from the afore mentioned species as well. Female cones of this species are a yellowish tan color with smooth scales and are wooly. Male cones are a yellowish orange color.

Culture: In coastal and inland areas, this plant does well in full or partial sun. For desert areas, this species would do well in partial sun or filtered light. This species prefers a soil that drains well.

Landscape Usage: This is a showy, green species and should be placed as such. They do make spectacular shows and need some room. I would place them in the mid to far ranges of a planting (depending on what you are growing), but not over-crowd them so the can be viewed and appreciated.

Price: € 19
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Zamia standleyi- Rare Cycas Cycad Palm -no Seeds

Zamia standleyi

A striking, small Zamia native to seasonally dry forests in Guatemala and Honduras with few, superb, glossy, most elegantly arching leaves that often emerge in a stunning bronze or red. It is best suited to a spot under established canopy in a warm temperate or tropical climate.

Price: € 19
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Encephalartos lebomboensis 'Mananga'- Cycad Palm No Seeds


Encephalartos lebomboensis was first described in 1949 by Dr Inez Verdoorn. Its grows in the Lebombo Mountains, stretching from northern KwaZulu-Natal through Swaziland and up into Mpumalanga and Mozambique. In 1995 Dr Piet Vorster re-named the plants from the central part of the geographic range (the Lebombo range from 50 km north of Siteki in Swaziland to the Josini Dam/Pongolapoort Dam in Kwazulu-Natal) as Encephalartos senticosus, based mainly on differences in their cones.

Encephalartos lebomboensis occurs in two areas, a northern form around Mananga in Mpumalanga and a southern form centred around Piet Retief on the upper Pongola River Valley. It is a medium to large cycad with a trunk which can grow to 12 feet tall over time. Its leaves dark green, glossy leaves arch outward. It can form numerous suckers from the base and occasional trunk offsets. Stems of the Piet Retief form are shorter and fatter, with finer and more spiny leaflets.

All forms of Encephalartos lebomboensis grow on the slopes of high ridges and cliffs along river valleys. They grow in full sun, in a hot summer climate with annual rainfall of 25-30 inches per year, cool foggy winters. It thrives in tropical and warm temperature climates, grows well in sun or light shade, and is relatively fast growing for a cycad. Like nearly all cycads, it needs excellent drainage and may be damaged by heavy frosts, but can withstand light frosts.

Price: € 19
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Cycas sp. Thai Silver - Rare Cycas Cycad Palm -no Seeds

Cycas sp. Thai Silver
Native to mountain forests at moderate and high altitudes in Kanjanaburi province in western Thailand, this very attractive, undescribed species has only recently been discovered. It sports a beautiful crown of most stunning, silvery-white foliage, carried by short, stocky trunks often blackened by fire. In cultivation it should grow best in subtropical/warm temperate areas and should have no problem with an occasional light freeze.

Price: € 18
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Cycas ophiolitica- Rare Cycas Cycad Palm -no Seeds

Cycas ophiolitica
Marlborough Blue Cycad

An excellent Australian species with glaucous to powdery blue leaves. It can be grown in warm temperate to tropical areas but prefers hot, dry inland conditions and low humidity. Heavy soils (serpentine) with excellent drainage and a place in full sun will produce optimum colour.

Price: € 26
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide

Cycad: 1x Cycas media -Australian Sago- Rare Cycas Cycad Palm -no Seeds

Cycas media

This attractive cycad forms dense colonies in northeastern Australia. Growing quickly and easily, it should be in everyone's collection. It has grass green leaves and a trunk that grows ultimately to around 3.5 m (12 ft.) tall, though that may take a little time. Until then, grow it as an unusual house plant, or plant it outside in the warm temperate to tropical garden. It will tolerate light frosts, too.

Price: € 23
Shipping: € 9,50 Europe
Shipping: € 18/24 Worldwide