Alluaudia procera, or Madagascar Ocotillo, is a deciduous succulent tree native to Madagascar. In many ways it resembles our own Ocotillo (Fouquieria splendens). Both have small rounded leaves and grayish trunks with a lot of spines, but that is where the similarities end. The plants will reach 60 feet tall in nature and are usually unbranched. In Madagascar, the wood of the plant is used in building and for charcoal. They are interesting plants and should be part of any xeric plant collection.
Blooming: Our plant has never bloomed.
Culture: Alluaudia procera needs full sun or high interior lighting with a very well drained soil mix. In the greenhouse, we use a soil mix consisting of 2 parts concrete sand to 1 part loam with small gravel added to ensure good drainage. Plants are watered and allowed to dry thoroughly before watering again. If fertilizer is used, it should be diluted to ¼ (one-quarter)the recommended rate on the label. If grown in the home environment, the ideal temperatures should run between 68° to 86° F (20°-30° C) with winter time temperatures around 50° F (10°C). During the winter months, the plant will drop all of its leaves and no water should be given during this period.
Propagation: Alluaudia procera is propagated from cuttings taken in the spring or from seed when available.
Alluaudia procera was featured as Plant of the Week March 25-31, 2005.
Guide to Past Plants-of-the-Week:
Cal's Plant of the Week was provided as a service by the University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology & Plant Biology and specifically the late Cal Lemke, who used to be OU's botany greenhouse grower and an avid gardener at home as well. If the above links don't work, then try the overview site. You may also like to look at the thumbnail index. ©1998-2012 All rights reserved.