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Alluaudia ascendens (Fantsiolotse)


Scientific Name

Alluaudia ascendens (Drake) Drake

Common Names

Fantsiolotse (local name)


Didierea ascendens

Scientific Classification

Family: Didiereaceae
Subfamily: Didiereoideae
Genus: Alluaudia


Alluaudia ascendens is a spiny succulent tree with leaves growing directly out from the trunk. It grows up to 40 feet (12 m) tall. Leaves are fleshy, green or reddish in full sun, heart-shaped, and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long. Flowers are white to dull reddish and appear in clusters at the top of the stems.


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 very well-drained soil mix and freely circulating air. The best way to water these succulents is to completely soak the soil and then let it dry out completely before you water 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.


Alluaudia ascendens is endemic to Madagascar.


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