A picture of a Kambroo

Kambroo

Fockea edulis

Photo by Going.Local (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Moderate care
Light watering
Tender

13b

USDA zone

18°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

1.5m

Max

60cm

30cm

Min

10cm

Flowering

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

This plant has a mild fragrance

More images of Kambroo

Fockea edulis 1
Sundial House (Schönbrunn) Fockea capensis 20080216 a
A photo of Kambroo

Kambroo Overview

Fockea edulis is one of 6 species of Fockea (with numerous synonyms) found in tropical, Eastern and Southern Africa. This interesting plant has a swollen, sometimes warty, tuber, which in its natural habitat grows partially or completely underground. Its thin vining branches climb up unto any support given, including surrounding plants. It is native to Namibia and the drier areas of South Africa(Nothern and Western Cape) and grows naturally in dry savannah and rockery. When kept dry, it will enter dormancy, losing all its leaves during the winter season. The Kambro is easy to grow, hardy and grows well in moist soils with excellent drainage. Ideally, the tuber must be kept in shade, but it will tolerate some light sun exposure. It is able to endure short periods of frost and is hardy to -2 degrees Celsius. The stems readily exude a milky latex when bruised, said to be poisonous. This beautiful plant produces male and female flowers on separate plants (dioecious). Flowers are white-green in colour, slightly scented and pollinated by fruit flies. This plant may sometimes be referred to as "Hottentot", an offensive term that was historically used to refer to the Khoikhoi, a member of a group of indigenous peoples of South Africa and Namibia. We do not support the usage of such a term.

Common problems with Kambroo

Susceptible to greenfly while flowering.

    How to harvest Kambroo

    Generally not harvested

    How to propagate Kambroo

    Seed

    Sow seed as soon as ripe. Plants are dioecious so one of each sex is needed to obtain seeds.

    Special features of Kambroo

    Pot plant

    Use a gritty compost with some humus as planting medium, plant the tubers on the surface of the compost, provide supports for vegetative growth to twine around.

    Drought resistant

    Other uses of Kambroo

    Edible

    Tubers of several species are edible and eaten (roasted) despite the latex, which flows in copious amounts from broken roots. Cooking is reported to inactivate the latex.