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Portulacaria Afra (Elephant Bush)

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Description

While the leaves of this plant inspired it’s common name to become ‘Miniature, or ‘Dwarf Jade Plant’ it is anything but small! We just got these 3’ tall ones into the shop, but they can grow up to 15 feet, even indoors! They’re slow growers so you don’t have worry about them quickly staging a takeover but you can expect a large and healthy plant with proper care and patience 

Despite their size ‘Portulacaria Afra’ or ‘Elephant Bush’ are still succulents and should be treated accordingly. The more light you can give them the better, and they’re drought tolerant so don’t stress over a missed watering. Also, if you prune it aggressively and strategically at the beginning of the growing season you can trigger full, bushy growth and use the cuttings you take to easily create baby plants!

Ed's Plant Profile

  • Botanical Name: Portulacaria Afra
  • Pronunciation: por-tew-luh-KAR-ee-uh AF-ruh 
  • Common Name: Elephant Bush, Elephant’s Foot, Miniature Jade Plant
  • Family: Portulacaceae 
  • Native Range: South Africa, Swaziland 

Ed's Care Guide

  • Care: Easy
  • Light: Prefers bright to bright indirect
  • Water: Allow the soil to dry out completely between watering. Is drought tolerant
  • Humidity: Can tolerate average home humidity
  • Temperature:  45-90F
  • Pruning: Prune as needed to remove brown or dead leaves and control growth. 
  • Feeding: Fertilize as needed during spring and summer 
  • Propagation: Stem or leaf cuttings
  • Growth: Slow growing
  • Pests: Look out for mealy bugs
  • Toxicity: Toxic to humans and pets