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Products > Pseudopanax ferox
 
Pseudopanax ferox - Fierce Lancewood

This listing for information only - We no longer grow this plant  

 
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Araliaceae (Ginsengs)
Origin: New Zealand (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: Green
Bloomtime: Not Significant
Height: 10-16 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Cool Sun/Light Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Pseudopanax ferox (Fierce Lancewood) A small slow growing tree-like plant that can reach 18 feet at maturity in 10 to 15 years. At maturity the plant has a rounded crown of shorter and wider leaves atop a straight longitudinally grooved slightly-twisted and sinewy trunk but it is the juvenile plants that are most interesting. The juvenile leaves, which this plant holds until maturity, are very narrow and over 1 foot long of a gray-green color with a metallic sheen. In addition they have an attractive prominent reddish midrib and large blunt teeth along the margins. The leaves are produced all around the upright developing single trunk and hang downwards starting with the newest leaves held at about a 45 degree angle with older leaves, which often go right down to the base of the plant, held nearly flat against the stem. The insignificant small green flowers appear only once plants mature and are in terminal compound umbels. Plant in part day to full coastal sun in a very well-drained soil and water occasionally to regularly. Plants will grow in full shade but very slowly and have fewer leaves. Hardy to 15-20 F with light frost damage inducing branching. The dimorphic changes between a smaller juvenile and the mature plant is common in New Zealand plants and is thought to be a defense mechanism to prevent animals (perhaps even the legendary Moa, a large flightless and now extinct bird) from browsing a young tree. Pseudopanax is a genus of about 22 trees and shrubs found in New Zealand, Tasmania, New Caledonia, China and Chile. There are 14 species endemic to New Zealand of which Pseudopanax ferox is one of the rarer. It can be found in scattered groups in lowland forest from Mangonui in the north island to Otago on the south island. The name Pseudopanax is from the Latin word false and Panax, a related genera (Ginseng), in the Aralianceae so it means false Panax. The tree is called fierce lancewood in reference to its fierce looking saw tooth shaped juvenile leaves and is also called Toothed Lanceword or by its Maori name of Horoeka.  This description is based on research and observations of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in our nursery garden and in other gardens that we visit. We also incorporate comments received and appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have any additional information about this plant, particularly if they disagree with what we have written or if they have additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing Pseudopanax ferox.