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Care of the plant Cussonia paniculata or Mountain cabbage tree.

Care of the plant Cussonia paniculata or Mountain cabbage tree

The genus Cussonia, family Araliaceae, includes 20 species of trees and shrubs native to Africa. Some species are: Cussonia paniculata, Cussonia spicata, Cussonia arborea, Cussonia transvaalensis, Cussonia holstii.

Common name: Mountain cabbage tree. This species is native to South Africa.

They are small trees or large semi-perennial shrubs with succulent roots and a wide crown that reach 8 meters in height. The attractive, waxy-textured leaves are large (up to 60 cm) and have large (7-9) blue-green lobes. They produce cylindrical spikes filled with small yellowish-green flowers that attract butterflies and bees. They bloom in late summer. In autumn, fleshy purple fruits appear.

These slow-growing plants are used in small gardens as isolated specimens, in public parks and walks, or in pots for patios and terraces.

The Cussonia paniculata prefers a semi-shade exposure in its youth and full sun when it is settled. They resist weak frosts but it is better not to expose them to less than 5ºC.

The soil must be well drained and contain organic matter. The pot transplant is done in spring; the roots are quite delicate.

Water regularly in spring and summer, waiting for the soil to dry out completely; it's important never to flood. They resist a few days of drought.

Fertilize with compost or manure in early spring.

Prune in late winter to remove dry branches and inflorescences.

They are quite resistant plants to the usual pests and diseases.

They propagate by seeds sown before 3 months from their collection (they lose germination capacity) in a sandy and humid substrate. They can take between 4 and 7 weeks to germinate; in summer they germinate faster.


Images of the plant Cussonia paniculata or Mountain cabbage tree

Cussonia paniculata
Cussonia paniculata
Cussonia paniculata