Alluaudia ascendens (Drake) Drake
Fantsiolotse (local name)
Alluaudia ascendens is a spiny succulent tree with heart-shaped leaves growing directly from the trunk. It grows up to 40 feet (12 m) tall. Leaves are thick, fleshy, green or reddish in full sun, and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long. Flowers are white to dull reddishly and appear in clusters at the top of the stems in fall.
USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Alluaudias need full sun or high interior lighting with a well-drained soil mix and freely circulating air. The best way to water these succulents is to soak the soil and let it dry out before you water it again. If fertilizer is used, it should be diluted to 1/4 the recommended rate on the label.
These plants must be protected in the greenhouse over the winter. Established Alluaudias should tolerate temperatures around 32 °F (0 °C). During the winter months, the plants will drop all of their leaves, and no water should be given during this period.
However, if planted in the landscape, it will often drop all its leaves when it decides to take a rest. When this happens, cut down on the watering until the leaves start to appear again.
Alluaudias are propagated from cuttings taken in the spring or from seed when available.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Alluaudia.
This species is endemic to Madagascar.
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