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Adansonia grandidieri (Grandidier's Baobab)

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Scientific Name

Adansonia grandidieri Baill.

Common Names

Grandidier's Baobab

Scientific Classification

Family: Malvaceae
Subfamily: Bombacoideae
Genus: Adansonia

Description

Adansonia grandidieri is the most beautiful of the Baobabs. It has a massive cylindrical trunk, up to 10 feet (3 m) in diameter, covered with smooth, reddish-grey bark. It grows up to 100 feet (30 m) tall. At certain times of the year, the flat-topped crowns bear bluish-green palmate leaves, dark brown floral buds, or spectacular flowers with white petals. The large, dry fruits contain kidney-shaped seeds within an edible pulp.

Photo via zastavki.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Baobabs are quite easily grown from seed, although they are seldom available in nurseries. Seed can be collected from dry fruits by cracking the fruit, open and washing away the dry, powdery coating. The dark brown to black, kidney-shaped seeds should be soaked in a container of hot water and allowed to cool, and they may then be sown after soaking for 24 hours. Seeds are best sown in spring and summer in a well-drained seedling mixture containing 1/3 sand.

Cover the seed with sand to a depth of 0.15 to 0.25 inch (4 to 6 mm), place the trays in a warm semi-shaded position and water regularly until the seeds have all germinated. Germination may take from 2 to 6 weeks. Seedlings should be carefully monitored for damping-off fungus, which can be treated with a fungicidal drench.

Transplant the seedlings once they are 2 inches (5 cm)  tall into individual containers, preferably in sandy soil with some well-rotted compost and bone meal. Baobabs grow reasonably quickly when they are young. See more at Baobab: The Largest Succulent Plant in the World.

Origin

Adansonia grandidieri is native to Madagascar.

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