Germinating and Growing

Common African Indigenous Trees

 

 

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Leadwood

Combretum imberbe
 

 

 

 

1/ Unparasitised seeds can be carefully removed from the four-winged fruit. The seed should be planted in seedling trays filled with river sand. Press seeds level with the sand, cover with a thin layer of sand and keep moist. Seedlings usually emerge after 7-15 days. Usually only a few seeds germinate in the first three weeks; therefore many seeds must be sown. Watch out for rodents - they enjoy the seed! Transplant seedlings into nursery bags when they reach the 2-leaf stage. Transplant into open ground when 200-250 mm tall. Relatively quick-growing under favourable conditions, 0.5-1 m per year. A tree for frost-free areas only. It is a protected tree in South Africa.

 

 

2/ Seeds that have not been parasitized should be removed carefully from the fruit, so that the seeds are not damaged, it is therefore preferable to select healthy looking fruits, soak them for a few hours and then plant in seedling trays filled with river sand. The seeds should be pressed down and covered with a thin layer of sand, and should be kept moist, not planted too deep and not given too much water. Seedlings will germinate after two weeks. When the seedlings reach the second leaf stage, they should be transplanted into nursery bags. The Leadwood is fairly drought resistant, but could be damaged by frost. Combretum imberbe will grow in most well-drained gardens and is quick growing from seeds, under favourable conditions. The Leadwood is rarely cultivated but it makes a fine shade tree, though it is big for an average garden.

 

 

3/ Removing the seeds from the fruit is not recommended. The whole fruit is soaked in water for a few hours and then sown. The seedlings should be planted shallowly and not given too much water. They grow very slowly – only about 8cm in one season.

 

 

 

 

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This web page was last updated on: 07 August, 2012