Portulacaria afra –Dwarf Jade

Portulacaria afra – Dwarf Jade, 
the Elephant's Food or 
Spekboom "fat pork tree" in Afrikaans

Easy care succulent from South Africa.
Can easily be grown as a houseplant with adequate bright light. Drought tolerant. Chronic over watering can kill the plant. Can go for several years without repotting. But do let the soil dry out. Fertilize at one-third strength during the growing season. Prune by pinching or cutting above a pair of pads.

Forest planting

"artistic pot plants"

limber tapering branches 

spekboom leaves have a 
slightly sour taste and are an 
excellent addition to salads!

succulent with a tree form

tropical plant that can’t survive
outdoors in very cold climates

Will bud back readily wherever 
branches or even leaves have been removed.

mini-jade need a very
 quick draining bonsai soil 

Portulacaria afra, the Elephant's Food 
or Spekboom  "fat pork tree"

Always allow the soil to approach
 dryness before watering. 

Portulacaria afra is an excellent
bonsai for beginners  


 In a feeding frenzy elephants
will strip off all the
leaves and smaller branches.

Portulacaria afra can safely go without 
water until the largest leaves start 
to show signs of wrinkling.

Dwarf Jade gives a clear sign when water needed,
 very helpful to bonsai beginners.

With time the trunk will develop 
 a coarse texture 

hardy in USDA zones 10-11

training in a semi- cascading style

Cuts should be flush rather than concave 
when removing branches


Grown in a semi-cascading style


Exposed roots

 grand dames of the desert

The branches will naturally droop from the 
weight of the water stored in the leaves.

Spekboom has potential
 to soak up carbon

the Elephant's Food

Older branches will hang down or trail on the ground. 

During the winter rest, keep almost dry.

Some trees will form a corky bark

Cuttings are liable to rot when put in
 green and newly severed, they should
 be spread out for a few days to allow 
the wounds to dry.

P. afra will not tolerate
 some chemical sprays. 
Avoid petroleum-based chemicals.

To hold a tree in the palm of ones hand

Portulacaria afra

1 comment:

  1. Lourens- Savannah, GAWednesday, 16 May, 2012

    Thanks so much for the lovely Spekboom!



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