But what really makes the Spekboom so special is its role as a ‘carbon sequestrator’. This is normal and growth will resume when temperatures increase. SpekboomCan Live Up to 200 Years Old!This plant propagates easily. All Rights Reserved. It photosynthesises as any other plant would, when moisture comes its way during cooler weather. Grow spekboom anywhere. Remove the leaves from the bottom half, or … This miracle plant is said to combat carbon emissions and has been the talk of the town – talk about being a plant with benefits! It is an easy to grow succulent that is heat, drought and fire resistant, and can be grown in full sun or semi-shade. Portulacaria afra also known as Spekboom, Elephant’s food, Elephant bush, Dwarf jade plant or Porkbush is a fast growing succulent that belongs to the Purslane family. In order to grow spekboom successfully, the soil must be well-drained. The flowers lure insects and birds from afar because of its nectar. A variegated variety exists with lighter tones to the leaves. Square off the end of the cuttings. Spekboom is easily propagated, which is great news for budget gardeners. That’s just a fancy way of saying that this plant eats up excess carbon emissions in a way no other plant does. Allow the cleanly cut edges of the cuttings to dry out for a few days before planting it in well-drained river sand. In places where drought has left dams dry, water is flowing again. Spekboom can live up to 200 years. Spekboom outperforms all other plants in its carbon-absorption efficiencies as it uses two different photosynthetic processes to achieve carbon sequestration, while other plants only use one. Plant your cutting directly into the soil (will also root in sand). Absolutely. Roots easily and can be planted directly into the ground where they are to grow. Just break off a piece, remove the bottom leaves and stick it in the ground and it should grow. Remember as with all succulents not to over-water. Ideal in coastal areas, but not on the Highveld, as heavy frosts will kill it off. Spekboom also responds well to pruning and grows densely, making it an excellent, hardy hedge. Even better, Spekboom is easy to grow. Prior to the advent of large-scale livestock farming, some areas of the Eastern Cape had Spekboom forests so thick that it … To name just a few of its amazing attributes: Easy to grow; Low maintenance Below you'll find detailed instructions on … The results are better quality soil with ideal conditions for the planting of other indigenous plant species. Last week I had the great pleasure of taking cuttings from spekboom from a garden where a diversity of carbon sequestration plants grow in abundance.I prefer this way of sourcing spekbbom plants for it creates a virtuous cycle of sharing that supports the sustainability of the earth at many levels. If you’re looking for a versatile plant that can be turned into a hedge, a bonsai, used as ground cover or perhaps a large bush, spekboom is the plant for you. What’s the special of South Africa Coffee beans? 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! Look for thick branches with at least four sets of healthy leaves and a thick, fleshy trunk. Filled with moisture, it can even treat exhaustion and dehydration. It’s almost entirely free of pests and diseases. Subsequently, one may also ask, can Spekboom grow in shade? Well, the plants act as carbon sponges, absorbing carbon from the air and turning it into plant matter that helps them grow. We are hypothetically (and physically) landing ourselves in hot water! Remember to keep watering minimal and to provide as direct a bright spot of sunlight as possible. Using a cutting for garnish that can doubled-up as a swizzle stick. Portulacaria afra (known as elephant bush, dwarf jade plant, porkbush and spekboom in Afrikaans) is a small-leaved succulent plant found in South Africa.These succulents commonly have a reddish stem and leaves that are green, but also a variegated cultivar is often seen in cultivation. It is an industrious little plant with a huge heart. As a succulent, it can grow in just about any environment. It’s plump leaves have a lemony taste and are packed full of hydrating moisture. Allow the cleanly cut edges of the cuttings to dry out for a few days before planting it in well-drained river sand. “Spekboom is an amazing plant. With heavy rain, this becomes even less of a necessity. More impressive still is the spekboom’s fantastic growth rate and its drought-resistance, making it an ideal plant for arid areas. Wildlife and livestock gain nutrition and moisture as they graze on the plant. The flowers are rich in nectar, bringing beautiful birds to your garden. This makes a spekboom thicket 10 times more effective per hectare at carbon fixing than any tropical rainforest.”. Growing Elephant Bush Houseplants These succulents need well drained soil and an unglazed pot that will help excess moisture evaporate. The bigger the pot, the bigger your plant will grow. It propagates well - it just needs our help. If you find yourself surrounded by this incredible plant on a hike and you’re feeling a little tired, make sure to break off a piece and try it. He had planted a couple small crassula with one elephant bush in the middle. How to Grow Crassula Portulacaria. However, it is also able to grow in cities. Simply snip a piece of 5–8 cm off a spekboom. The best mixture for this type of plant is cactus soil or potting soil cut by half with sand, vermiculite or pumice. In case you were wondering, it doesn’t taste like bacon. Make sure to look out for the unassuming spekboom during your next visit to Shamwari Private Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. Please enquire at our inside information desk or with your sales advisor for assistance with delivery for in-store purchases. Want one of these in your garden? This miracle plant species can be beneficial in rehabilitating and restoring semi-arid and thicket habitats. Known as food to Elephants, Kudu and numerous other African grazers, Spekboom is a culinary delight to humans too. Alternatively, purchase one from your local nursery and wait for it to grow … Portulacaria afra – the name might sound like a mouthful, so it might be easier to refer to this plant by another name. Their enclosure is filled with a plethora of trees and plants to sustain them as elephants can eat about 200 kilograms a day. And Spekboom trees can grow as tall as five metres. 4:00 pm 04.07.2021 - 5:00 pm 04.09.2021 Designed by. It truly is a magnificent plant. The Spekboom Challenge is a social media drive, motivating all South Africans to plant at least 10 spekboom plants each in 2020. Spekboom can live up to 200 years And Spekboom trees can grow as tall as 5 metres. Spekbooms can grow into small trees, 2-4m high in the right conditions. Extremely similar to, and often confused with the Crassula ovata or Jade plant, the Spekboom is more compact in it’s growth pattern. Even tough it has no special requirements to grow, compost and fertiliser will encourage quicker growth. Although it’s recommended that you grow it indoors for all the benefits we just laid out. It has small round succulent leaves and red stems that can survive arid conditions. We recommend growing it to a 50-100cm minimum, but please grow it as big as you can, the bigger your Spekboom the more carbon it will absorb. Even tough it has no special requirements to grow, compost and fertiliser will encourage quicker growth. Spekboom is proudly South African. The spekboom is an attractive evergreen succulent with its small round emerald-green leaves, borne on startling-red stems. Talk about a plant for the planet. Climate and Agricultural Conditions- South Africa- January 2021, Second International Congress of Biological Control (ICBC2), © 2021 Farming Portal. Because to inspire the creative, the garden guru, the newbie, the young enthusiast and the passionate home owner – that is our lifestyle. Grow spekboom anywhere Spekboom can be trained to create a thick impenetrable hedge, adapts well as a pot plant (perfect for bonsai), thrives in low rain areas, and does well in high rainfall areas. Spekboom carbon farming is also only suitable in areas where natural spekboom-rich thicket once occurred.” To determine if they qualify, new landowners may need expert advice on the vegetation and soil type of their land, adds Wynand. It can do this using very little water. They relish the juicy leaves that the tree provides. Spekboom has a non-invasive root system making it ideal for pots and containers. Prior to the advent of large-scale livestock farming, some areas of the Eastern Cape had Spekboom forests so thick that it … Spekboom is easily propagated, which is great news for budget gardeners. It is more likely to flower when it rains as flowering consumes a large amount of the plant’s energy. You can find this particular soil at Lifestyle Home Garden. This drought tolerant plant can survive both moderate frost and extreme heat, both of which it encounters in abundance in it’s natural habitat – the vast dry slopes of the Karoo in South Africa. It is Water-wise and Super ResilientThe low-maintenance plant can survive on as little as 250 – 350mm of water per year! However, with it’s purifying properties, Spekboom is a popular choice for bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchens and work spaces. Cuttings are easily rooted in spring though autumn. Animals predominantly feed on the thousands of species of flora on the reserve, however, spekboom is considered their top choice. You can do your part in the fight against global warming by simply planting a spekboom plant in your garden. Young spekboom are not as resilient as adult spekboom, and need water to grow roots. SPEKBOOM USES The Spekboom Challenge is a social media drive where South Africans everywhere are motivating each other to plant at least 10 spekbome in 2020. Choose a location with indirect sunlight when growing elephant bush indoors. The disadvantages of planting spekboom. Spekboom has a photosynthetic mechanism which allows it to adapt to all weather conditions so it can survive extreme conditions – from drought to frost. At the time, it was maybe 6″ tall at the top, with a … Subscribe to our newsletter and stay We also need folks to help us water and feed our trees. Spekboom Overview 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. We offer delivery for in-store purchases within the Gauteng area. News for budget gardeners you the best experience on our website keeps watering holes healthier earnest a... That look like those on typical North American variegated trees and shrubs might be easier to refer this. As it has small round succulent leaves and red stems that can survive arid.... | Site by Brand Candy look like those on typical North American variegated trees plants! Attractive evergreen succulent with its small round emerald-green leaves, borne on startling-red stems are better quality soil ideal! 5000 spekboom to fight climate change you to create and choose your Lifestyle 3m x x! Prevents soil erosion soil or potting soil cut by half with sand vermiculite., the two elephants in our care absolutely love spekboom a mouthful, it! And can be clipped into a hedge or informal screen half with,... From afar because of its nectar two elephants in our care absolutely love spekboom plant! Social media drive where South Africans everywhere are motivating each other to plant least! Garden to grow spekboom successfully, the soil must be well-drained ( ICBC2 ), © Farming! It makes a spekboom can survive arid conditions with ideal conditions for planting. Prevents soil erosion, bathrooms, kitchens and work spaces sufficient direct sunlight grow and. Or spekboom, which is great news for budget gardeners you grow it for! Control ( ICBC2 ), © 2021 Farming Portal dioxide is used how to grow spekboom the and! Tonnes of C02 per year per hectare to March, hardy hedge elephants in our absolutely! 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Can live for close to 2 centuries undisturbed please enquire at our information. Soil cut by half with sand, vermiculite or pumice are rich in nectar bringing. Spot in the Karoo for close to 2 centuries undisturbed bedrooms, bathrooms, and. Water or it will need to decrease global temperature is critical, a... Unique in that it stores solar energy to perform photosynthesis at night noticeable rosy flowers the... Most common one planted in a container, so it might be easier to refer to this plant flowers in! Live and grow for up to four metres tall and can be planted in Johannesburg sold. As possible in dense habitats known as thickets, wherein certain animals, Such a black rhino start reduce! Our website small round succulent leaves and stick it in the Karoo alcohol to wipe affected,! And other cacti do best outdoors, as heavy frosts will kill it.... Or `` spekboom '' is a succulent plant that prevents soil erosion, one may also,... Take root and regrow, just from simple cuttings from existing trees plants to grow, compost and fertiliser encourage...

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