Etymology: spinulosum – with small spines, in reference to the leaflet margins.
Native to Mexico (once widely distributed, now localised in the low lands of Sierra Madre Oriental mountain range) this cycad is long-lived and slow-growing. In it’s natural habitat plants grow in shady ravines and canyons developed on limestone formations and covered with tropical evergreen forest.
One of the tallest of all cycads, with trunks reaching in excess of 15m. It’s graceful crown is reminiscent of a small palm. It’s cones are amoung the largest of any cycad. Female cones weighing up to 25kg have been recorded. Being so heavy these cones commonly cause the supporting peduncle to bend and the cones slop between the lower leaves and hang below the crown. At maturity these cones burst with a loud noise. In Mexico the seeds are gathered and used by the locals for cooking once ground up and for decoration.
It has long, stiff light green leaves and is relatively hardy. According to David L. Jones ‘Cycads of the world’ (a book we highly recommend). Dioon spinulosum is best suited to tropical, subtropical and perhaps temperate regions. This species has been reported as surviving temperates down to -5 degrees. Plants require warm, humid conditions and grow well in partial shade or filtered sun. A wide range of soils are suitable, with those of neutral to slightly alkaline pH being tolerated and perhaps even preferred. Frost-tolerance is very low.
Slightly smaller $400 (only 3 in stock)