A picture of a Kei Cycad

Kei Cycad

Encephalartos princeps

Full Sun
Moderate care
Moderate watering
Frost Hardy

9a

USDA zone

-7°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

4m

Max

4m

2m

Min

2m

0

Kei Cycad Overview

The Kei cycad is indigenous to the eastern Cape, and specifically to the Kei River catchment area. Leaves are blue-green, maturing to a grey-green. Female cones are barrel-shaped and 30 - 40 cm in length and produce red seeds.

Common problems with Kei Cycad

Few, but include mealy bug and scale insects.

How to harvest Kei Cycad

Harvest seed when mature and colored.

How to propagate Kei Cycad

Seed

Naked seeds grow on female plants and need pollen from male plants to be fertile. Sow fresh fertile seeds in sandy soil and keep warm and moist. Germination can take 1-3 months.

Suckers

Allow suckers to grow attached to the motherplant for about two years until they have enough reserves to survive on their own. Remove with a clean cut and use flowers-of-sulphar to help the wounds to heal.

Special features of Kei Cycad

Pot plant

Indoor plant

Drought resistant

Other uses of Kei Cycad

Ornamental

Edible

The Afrikaans name 'Broodboom' came from the traditional use of the pith as bread - note that Cycads is toxic and it needs a 3month fermentation process to break down those toxins!