Encephalartos woodii cross with Encephalartos transvenosus
Encephalartos woodii is truly one of the most enigmatic plants ever discovered. Only one plant has ever been found! The original plants for found in Africa by John Medley Wood, who this species is named after. The original plant was eventually removed from habitat piece by piece. Eleven offsets and trunks were removed and relocated. E. woodii is a male plant, no female plant has ever been found. Propagation therefore can only be asexual, by offsets etc. This makes it the most sought after cycad for collectors. It is estimated there are around a thousand plants in cultivation worldwide. This species grow large and massive up to 20 feet tall and 30" trunk diameter. The leaves are long and beautifully arching. Plants of this species sell for thousands of dollars! This is the Holy Grail for cycad collectors. Encephalartos woodii also has the distinction of being one of the oldest plants in greenhouse cultivation, at Kew Gardens England.
Encephalartos woodii is of easy culture comparable to other Encephalartos species. As with most cycads, growth is slow, pushing a new flush of leaves about once a year. Plant in full sun with well draining soil. Avoid prolonged cold temperatures. Since there are only male plants, propagation is from offsets. If you are fortunate to acquire one, make sure it is well rooted and established. Plants should be established for at least two years. Other options are to purchase crossed plants. These are plants that are a result of woodii pollen being used to pollinate other Encephalartos species. Some of the best crosses are with E. transvenosus, E. natalensis, E. horridus, and E. altensteinii. These crosses can be beautiful and vigorous growers. As with most crosses these plants can quickly grow into impressive specimens. If you can't afford to buy this plant but want to see it in person, you may want to check out the three beautiful specimens at Lotusland, Santa Barbara California.
Encephalartos woodii cross with Encephalartos natalensis
Encephalartos woodii cross with Encephalartos horridus
Encephalartos woodii cross with Encephalartos altensteinii