How to Grow Pachypodium - Planting & Caring

By Sharon & Team   /   Shrubs Category   /   2023

Pachypodium, or Madagascar palm, is a genus of spiny, succulent plants native to Madagascar. They are popular houseplants and can be grown outdoors in warm, frost-free climates. Pachypodiums are easy to care for and require little water or fertilizer. With their striking flowers and lush foliage, these plants make a dramatic addition to any landscape.

How to Grow Pachypodium - Planting & Caring

Growing Easiness

Is it easy to grow Pachypodium plant? The Pachypodium is an easy to grow plant that does not require much maintenance. It is a perfect plant for beginners or those who do not have much experience with plants. The Pachypodium is a hardy plant that can tolerate a wide range of conditions. It is a fast growing plant that can reach up to 3 feet tall. The Pachypodium is a drought tolerant plant that does not require much water. It is a low maintenance plant that does not require much fertilizer. The Pachypodium is a perfect plant for those who want a easy to grow plant that does not require much maintenance.

Plant Size

How big can it be? So, if you want to have a big Pachypodium, you should choose a Pachypodium that is at least 1.5 m tall.

Growth Rate

How fast is the growth? When it comes to the growth rate of Pachypodium, it is considered to be slow-growing. However, with the right amount of care, they can grow quite quickly. They can reach up to 12 feet tall and 6 feet wide. As for the leaves, they are usually 20 to 30 inches long and 12 to 18 inches wide. The flowers of this plant are white and they have a diameter of 1 to 2 inches.

Pachypodium Basic Knowledge

Plant Form Shrub
Family Apocynaceae
Origin Madagascar, South Africa

Lifespan, Perennial or Annuals

How long is the lifespan? Since they are native to arid and semi-arid climates, most Pachypodium species are drought-tolerant and can survive for long periods without water. However, they will flower and fruit more profusely if they are given regular watering during the growing season. Most Pachypodiums are hardy in USDA hardiness zones 10–11, though a few species can tolerate cooler temperatures down to zone 9.

Ideal Temperature

What is the ideal temperature? known that they can not withstand the heat, so in the summer the optimal temperature for them is 64.4-82.4 degrees Fahrenheit. In winter, the temperature should not be below 60.8 degrees Fahrenheit.


What about the humidity? Since this type of succulent doesn't need to be sprayed, it can tolerate dry air. Pachypodiums are native to regions with little rainfall, so they don't require much humidity. If the air in your home is too dry, you can increase the humidity around your Pachypodium by setting the pot on a tray of pebbles and water. The water will evaporate and increase the humidity around the plant.

Light Requirement

What amount of light this plant needed? So, Pachypodiums will do best in a south-facing window with some shading in the spring. They like bright light but will take a half-shadow.

Soil Composition

What is good soil for Pachypodium? The best type of soil for a Pachypodium is a well-drained mix that's one-third to one-half the height of the pot. The mix should be one part leaf litter, one part sod, and one part coarse sand or perlite. It's also useful to have a piece of clay, brick, and charcoal on hand. And always use a pot with a hole.

Watering Time

How much I must water Pachypodium? The Pachypodium should be watered abundantly once every 2-3 weeks during the growth period. The soil should be allowed to dry out between waterings. In winter, watering should be reduced significantly, with no more than 1 watering per month.

Fertilizing and Nutritient

About fertilizer. The best time to apply fertilizer to pachypodium is from May to September. Fertilize once a month using a liquid fertilizer that has been diluted twice.


How to reproduce Pachypodium? Common ly, the apical cuttings of the plant do not take root well. However, you may have some success rooting in a mixture of peat and sand. The plant multiplies by separating small branches that grow at the base of the plant. It is typically best to root cuttings in the summer. Before planting, the cuttings should be dried for 5-8 days on the newspaper. Root in a mixture of peat and sand, in a warm, bright place. The substrate must be constantly slightly moist. Pachypodium plant may also spread by seeds at a temperature of 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit. Soak the seeds in warm water for 24 hours before sowing in moist sand. Seeds should be sprinkled with a very thin (about 0.5 cm) layer of sand. Seeds germinate from 3-4 days to 6 months.


Why Pachypodium won't bloom? Sometimes, the flowers are red, yellow, or pink. They can be fragrant, and the most common color is white. Pachypodium lamerei flowers are white and only bloom on adult plants that are older than seven years old.

Transfer or Repotting

How much I must water Pachypodium? So, it's best to transplant Pachypodiums every two to four years in the spring. The roots of Pachypodiums are delicate, so transplanting too often can damage them.

Caring The Pachypodium

How to care the plant? The plant is best placed in the garden or on the balcony in summer to enjoy the airing. It is normal for some of the leaves to fall at the beginning of winter. To avoid pricking and irritation from the corrosive juice, it is better to wear gloves when working with the plant.

Pests & Challenges

What is the challenge when caring Pachypodium plant? The main thing - to create conditions close to natural. It is better to choose a bright spot without direct sunlight. Pachypodium does not like drafts, so the windows in the room should be protected. The plant is thermophilic, so the content temperature should not fall below + 20 ° C. Pachypodium need a good air exchange, so the room should be ventilated regularly. The soil for pachypodiums is light, breathable and well drained. It is best to use a mixture of turf, sand and leaf soil in equal proportions. The plant is drought-tolerant, but the soil should not be allowed to dry out completely. Pachypodium is watered as the top layer of the soil dries. Water the plant with warm water, standing. Excess moisture in the soil is detrimental to pachypodium, so the pot must have good drainage.

Toxic & Poisonous Type

Are Pachypodium poisonous? Common ly called the Madagascar palm, oleander, or nerium, the pachypodium is a genus of flowering plants in the dogbane family. Pachypodiums are succulent plants, meaning they store water in their thickened, fleshy leaves, stems, or roots. The genus includes about 20 species of annual and perennial plants, shrubs, and small trees. Pachypodiums are native to Africa, where they grow in dry, rocky habitats. Some species are found in Madagascar, while others occur in Arabia and the Horn of Africa. Pachypodiums are toxic to humans and animals. The juice of the plant contains saponins, which are toxic to the liver and kidneys. Symptoms of poisoning include vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures. In severe cases, pachypodium poisoning can be fatal.