Most South Africans have heard about Spekboom in one form or another. Elephant bush houseplants (Portulacaria afra) thrive in bright light in a warm, draft-free room. Portulacaria afra – the name might sound like a mouthful, so it might be easier to refer to this plant by another name. The word afra is in reference to the fact that the plant occurs in Africa. Another benefit of the Spekboom is being edible. Best rated succulents online store. It can easily be grown from cuttings, which can survive even in dry conditions. Get 1 Free Product Today All India Delivery Lowest prices. In fact, it’s a good idea to let your plant dry out slightly between watering. You may need to adjust the plant to the full sun at first. Portulacaria afra can be grown from seed or by propagation. Portulacaria is generally suited to all areas of SA but is not ideal in heavy frost areas. Portulacaria Afra enables its survival mode when it is severely short on water. Even when you keep your Portulacaria afra indoors, you will need to provide it with lots of light. Thank you for your support! Shop with confidence from a Succulents lover who offers the best quality and excellent customer service. Variegated and rare. It has a thick trunk, but a fine branch structure with thick green oval-shaped succulent leaves. This colorful succulent garden is a three-dimensional showcase of succulents superbly suited to mild, frost-free regions. In Mozambique, breastfeeding mothers eat spekboom leaves to increase their milk supply. Photo by Tim Christophersen/Florian Fussstetter/UN Environment ... and benefits of, land restoration. And it has as many names as it has uses. However, when done slowly and methodically, Portulacaria afra benefits from pruning, which can force the tree to develop branches lower on its trunk. This versatile plant can be used in full sun or semi-shade, in dry areas or even in well-watered flowerbeds. It is a soft-wooded, semi-evergreen upright shrub or small tree, usually 2.5–4.5 meters (8–15 ft) tall. Elephant Bush Care & Growing Guide 1. Also known as Elephant’s food/the Pork bush, Portulacaria afra is a succulent shrub with small rounded leaves and a contrasting red stem. Once the soil dries out, though, be sure to water. During famine, the Zulus eat the leaves raw. see more; Family Didiereaceae . This miracle plant is said to combat carbon emissions and has been the talk of the town – talk about being a plant with benefits! Portulacaria afra is not prone to many diseases or pests. Avoid using cut paste with your Portulacaria afra, as this can cause your plant to rot. Cuttings root very easily in most potting media. As a succulent, it can grow in just about any environment. Caption reads "'Elephant's Food' (Portulacaria afra) trained in the double-trunk style by Doug and Gail Acker of the Phoenix Bonsai Society. There aren’t many options when it comes to varieties of Portulacaria afra you can use for bonsai growing. She holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Education degree. You can also choose from common bonsai cultivars like Limpopo (a large-leafed variety), Prostrata, (a low-lying option), Aurea (a cultivar with yellow leaves) and Foliis variegatus and Medio-picta (both of which are variegated types). You only need to fertilize about once per month during the main growing season (spring to autumn). Here’s what you need to know. These can cause them to bend from the excess weight. Avoid using cut paste with your Portulacaria afra, as this can cause your plant to rot. Spekboom is an extremely easy plant to grow. Inconspicuous flowers are produced in small clusters Details 'Variegata' is a well-branched, succulent shrub that can reach 3m tall but is usually grown as a houseplant. This colorful succulent garden is a three-dimensional showcase of succulents superbly suited to mild, frost-free regions. It has small round succulent leaves and red stems that can survive arid conditions. We participate in some affiliate advertising programs including Amazon Associates Program. In the winter, you can water as little as once every three to four weeks, especially if your plant is being grown in cooler conditions. Her writing interests cover everything from farming and gardening to education, health and wellness, and business. Portulacaria afra by Sue Hakala. This process reduces the unusually high carbon stocks in thicket (which exceed 200 t ha-1 in some regions) by more than 50%. Rebekah is a writer in upstate New York, just north of the Adirondack Mountains. Use a normal fertilizer that is well-balanced and apply it sparingly. Drought-tolerant and fire-resistant, it will endure desert sun and heat once established, which the jade plant will not. Spekboom is a favorite and popular succulent plant/tree in South Africa. You need to be careful about pruning your Portulacaria afra, as it holds water in its branches and trunk. The plant offers many health reasons and it is an eady-to-grow food source. They even transform carbon dioxide into oxygen during the night which is very unique to this plant. Portulacaria leaves are high in Vitamin-C and have a sour, juicy crunch. If you notice that the leaves have developed red edges, you are doing okay with the amount of sunlight you are providing. Website by Monica Hemingway, "This tree of wonder has the ability to absorb the highest amounts of carbon dioxide when compared to any other plant in existence.". It has now been shown to be effective in carbon sequestration (binding atmospheric carbon which is responsible for climate change), in semi-arid landscapes and thicket vegetation it is also being used for restoration purposes. They are only hardy in zones 10 and 11. “Spekboom (aka Portulacaria afra) is indeed a wonder plant, an ecosystem engineer and a significant part of the ecology of the Albany Thicket Biome. Interesting Facts about Portulacaria Afra Bonsai, Growing Portulacaria Afra Bonsai from Seed or By Propagation, Top 27 Deer Resistant Plants and Flowers for Your Garden, Elaeagnus (Elaeagnus x ebbingei) Plant: How To Grow and Care, How To Grow and Care for Dwarf Palmetto (Sabal minor), Fetterbush (Leucothoe fontanesiana): How to Grow and Care, Cleyera (Cleyera japonica): How to Grow and Care. Your leaves will regrow eventually, just take care of your beautiful dwarf jade succulent. It is an evergreen and performs best in a sunny position. 2. The small, rounded, fleshy leaves are pale silvery-green with wide cream margins, carried on dark red stems. This Proudly South African Plant is easy to grow indoors (in pots, in bright light to direct sunlight), in your garden, as an excellent, hardy hedge (responds well to pruning), and cultivated as a bonsai. Originally from the dry regions of South Africa, the Dwarf Jade is a fleshy, soft, woody small tree that grows up to 3m (10ft.) This plant isn’t quite as sensitive to overwatering as other succulents can be. Although most bonsai plants benefit from a gentle watering after they have been repotted, this is not something you need to do with your Portulacaria afra. South Africa – Spekboom (Portulacaria Afra) is an incredible plant found in South Africa which is a marvellous drought tolerant, a phenomenal carbon sponge and an excellent soil binding flora that prevents soil erosion. Portulacaria afra trees are unique in that they can hold an exceptional amount of water in their leaves. However, when done slowly and methodically, Portulacaria afra benefits from pruning, which can force the tree to develop branches lower on its trunk. The elephant bush (Portulacaria Afra) is a native of South Africa. In the wilds of South Africa, large plants do survive the winter frosts by growing dense enough to provide their own natural cover. Leaf propagation takes more time and it is a bit trickier. This should ideally be done in the spring. Wide variety of live succulents and cacti. They are beautiful yet extremely tough plants. Why the … It is one of but a few plants that release oxygen during day and night and as Spekboom creates clean air – it is a fantastic indoor plant; It promotes soil binding flora, which helps prevent erosion. Portulacaria afra grows 6 to 8 feet tall and spreads indefinitely.Use it as a backdrop plant, and/or prune into a hedge. Dwarf Jade (Portulacaria afra) Care guide for the Jade Bonsai tree. you will know just by its look; the leaves will have a shriveled and flat appearance. Portulacaria afra is an attractive and robust succulent shrub species that is grown around the globe and is often used ornamentally as a house plant, pruned to resemble a bonsai. However, do keep in mind that you can keep it outdoors as long as it is placed in full sun and is kept at temperatures above 50 degrees or so at all times. As long as you water it correctly and give it enough sunlight, it will do just fine and not suffer from any of the most common bonsai ailments. Buy Elephant bush, Portulacaria afra, Jade plant (Green) - Succulent Plant and 6000+ more gardening products online. And planting it in your own garden is a … Most gardeners will choose to grow this plant as a bonsai specimen, though. I make a spinach-and-tomato salad with, Potulacaria afra at Desert Theater Nursery, Portulacaria varieties at Waterwise Botanicals, Portulacaria afra, large form, Waterwise Botanicals, Portulacaria afra aurea at San Marcos Growers, Pot with Portulacaria afra 'Minima' design by Michael Buckner, Portulacaria afra 'Minima', Waterwise Botanicals, Portulacaria afra variegata at the Huntington, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' w red-orange aloe, euphorbia, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' in landscape by Michael Buckner, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' and bromeliad, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' and boulder, Portulacaria afra 'Minima' and Echeveria nodulosa, Portulacaria afra 'Minima' and 'Variegata' in pot, Garden with portulacarias by Michael Buckner2, Garden with portulacarias by Michael Buckner, Garden with Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' in terrace, Bonsai by Tom Jesch, Waterwise Botanicals, Arizona, Portulacaria afra 'Minima' growing over boulders, Arizona garden w Portulacaria afra 'Minima', Portulacaria afra 'Minima' and 'Variegata', Portulacaria afra with Kalanchoe blossfeldiana, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' and 'Minima' in Jeff Moore garden, Portulacaria afra 'Minima' with euphorbias, Portulacaria afra with Echeveria 'Black Knight', Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' with variegated furcraea, Portulacaria afra 'Minima' and Crassula perforata, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata' and pachyveria, Portulacaria in Patrick Anderson's garden, Portulacaria afra 'Minima', Echeveria agavoides 'Lipstick', Portulacaria afra 'Minima' at Waterwise Botanicals, Portulacaria afra 'Minima', Van Liew garden, Portulacaria afra 'Variegata', Waterwise Botanicals, Portulacaria afra: Uses, Photos and Varieties, Succulents for Coastal Southern California Gardens, Elephant's Food (Portulacaria afra), an Easy-Care Succulent. Mellow burn from the sun might be normal under extraordinary warmth conditions yet something else, these plants can deal with the warmth In its native habitat, Portulacaria afra provides 80 percent of the diet of elephants. SPEKBOOM PLANT ENVIRONMENTAL & HEALTH BENEFITS: Although sometimes confused with jade ( Crassula ovata ), the two plants are quite different. Elephant bush, Portulacaria afra, is a perennial succulent shrub from South Africa that is a popular succulent garden plant around the world.It is easily grown as a seasonal accent plant or low maintenance houseplant in our part of the world. Over the next three years, he and a team of over 100 workers planted 1,500 hectares of his farm with millions of cuttings of an indigenous succulent tree, the spekboom (Portulacaria afra) which can grow well even in dry conditions. You will need to repot your Portulacaria afra once every two years. Light requirements. Luckily, it’s a bonsai plant that has plenty of alternatives (elephant bush, porkbush, dwarf jade plant, and spekboom, in Afrikaans, just to name a few!). The resulting broken, fallen branches root readily. The name Portulacaria is composed of Portulaca + aria suggesting a similarity to the genus Portulaca. Portulacaria afra has also been used to bind soil to prevent erosion and is noted as a very efficient plant for absorbing atmospheric carbon (CO2) and is described as a "carbon sponge", using both the more common C-3 pathway for carbon fixation in the photosynthesis process and, when the temperatures rise, also used the Crassulacean Acid Metabolism (CAM) pathway that is found in many other succulents. This drought tolerant plant can survive both moderate frost and extreme heat, both of which it encounters in abundance in it’s natural habitat – … You can buy Portulacaria afra bonsai from most nurseries or specialty bonsai stores. However, it’s easiest to grow from cuttings that are propagated in the summer. However, there are both green and variegated options for you to choose from in most cases. many health benefits. Grow your Portulacaria afra indoors if you live in a temperate zone. It can tolerate a moderate degree of frost, especially when mature. ... which further benefits the plant, as well as other plants and animals including micro-organisms which occur in the area. Spekboom (portulacaria Afra) is an indigenous plant and proudly South African It is a plant that has MANY benefits such as tackling carbon emissions like no other plant can. Portulacaria afra (spekboom) is dominant, have been degraded by unstustainable pastoralism. But if the plant is not used to a lot of sunlight, you may have to slowly help the plant get used to full direct sunlight. In certain areas, the stems are used to help build huts/homes. An easy to care for plant, it is often used in bonsai cultivation. See them in gardens large and small, and discover their surprising benefits and attributes. Description. The Spekboom (Portulacaria Afra) is edible to humans and other animals. As succulents, they don’t need to be watered very often. It improves the quality of the air we breathe and helps fight climate change Spekboom (aka Portulacaria afra) is a succulent that helps fight air pollution. Spekboom – Botanical name: Portulacaria afra. The stems are dried and used as thatch for rooves of the huts/homes. The elephant bush loves sunlight and can be in full sun for several hours at a time. Although it’s recommended that you grow it indoors for all the benefits we just laid out. The plant Portulacaria afra ‘Variegata’ (Rainbow Bush) ” is a succulent with fleshy, glossy leaves that grows as a small bush. Instead, avoid watering for about one week. Find out how to select, use and grow these easy-care succulents from South Africa. The tree measures 25" in height, is ten years old, and has been in training six years. Spekboom (Portulacaria afra) is a small, succulent tree that is native to the Eastern Cape region of South Africa. Later your elephant jade plant can spread out and sprawl or hang. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases (at no extra cost to you). This will let the roots become dry and callous and can prevent fungal root rot. Degradation also reduces the availability of wood, fruit and medicines for local However, if you’re lucky enough to live in a frost-free area, you can even use Portulacaria afra in your outdoor landscaping! Most plants are shipped bare roots without the pot and soil, with the following exceptions:; Some plants shown in 2" pots - see more info Plants that require soil to stay healthy during transit - see more info We commit to shipping bare roots, which requires more time and labor, and provide excellent quality and service to our customers - see Benefits of Shipping Bare Roots A small-leaved succulent plant native to South Africa, Portulacaria afra is a small, succulent plant that produces compact growth and rounded pads. These can cause them to bend from the excess weight. Place your new plant into a well-draining soil mixture. It has the ability to ‘sequester’ or capture four to ten tons of carbon per hectare! Genus Portulacaria are shrubby succulents with fleshy stems, branches and leaves. Portulacaria afra ‘Variegata’ (tricolor or rainbow elephant bush) first appeared as a sport (variant growth) of Portulacaria afra.It has cream-and-green leaves and pendant, trailing stems; and forms low, shrubby mounds that spread several feet tall and wide. It grows quickly and is incredibly hardy. Portulacaria Afra needs a lot of brilliant daylight and can endure the full sun. Indoors or outdoors suit it just fine. In addition to writing, she also co-manages a farm, where she grows a variety of plants and raises chickens, pigs, and sheep. Portulacaria is a common landscape plant in Phoenix, Arizona and southern California, growing in USDA plant hardiness zones 9-11. (MRP Inclusive of all taxes) Shipping Rs 79 for entire order Dispatch in 5-8 days Country of origin: India Today Offer Buy any 2 plants get 1 plant free. In some cases, that may mean supplementing with a grow light. It consists of multiple, overlapping plants. 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