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Givotia madagascariensis

A small, dry deciduous tree native to western Madagascar with a thick, swollen trunk and attractive, palmate leaves.

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germination comments by our visitors
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Seeds from this species ...

... are difficult to germinate and need up to 1 year to sprout.
I purchased multiple batches of seed (from another site some years ago), and after many difficulties and trying many different methods managed to get one seedling which is now a 10 ft. tall specimen growing in the front yard of my home. Fruit shell should be scarified with a Dremel-type drill almost down to the embryo. This is best accomplished with a clamping mechanism and a steady hand. Scarred seeds should be left in a bag with a ripening avocado for a few days then sowed in a fast-draining mix and watered every few days in full sun. This technique is also effective with Manketti Nut (Schinziophyton) and probably Ricinodencron heudelotii, all in the same clade.
Submitted on 11/09/2012 by Barry Stock

... are very difficult to germinate and need up to 6 months to sprout.
After many attempts over a period of years with a lot of different batches and different techniques, I managed to grow one seedling. The batch with the one that germinated was soaked in HCL for a few hours to simulate digestion. However, the freshness of the seed may also be an issue. All of this group of Euphorbiaceae are a pain to germinate, Manketti nut as well. I would suggest starting with a lot of seed, and using either an HCL soak (worked with Givotia madagascariensis) or deep scarification and then exposure to a ripening gas (an avocado in a brown paper sac) which works for Schinziophyton / Ricinodencron rautanenii. Use a Dremel, and a clamp, as the nuts are hard as hell and you don't want to nick the flesh. Good luck and good growing!
Submitted on 31/12/2011 by Barry Stock

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
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If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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