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Products > Senecio decaryi
Senecio decaryi - Madagascar Senecio

[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Asteraceae (Sunflowers)
Origin: Africa, East (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Orange
Bloomtime: Summer
Synonyms: [S. amaniensis, Hort.]
Height: 4-5 feet
Width: 4-5 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Senecio decaryi (Madagascar Senecio) - A upright growing shrubby succulent to 4 to 5 feet tall with fleshy roots and branching ornately marked stems bearing oblanceolate 4 inch long blue-green leaves that have crimson colored venation and margins when first emerging. In summer on into fall this shrub is topped with a terminal 6 to 8 inch long branching inflorescence of bright yellow ray and disk flowers that, atypical to many in the genus, have a light but sweet aroma. Plant in full sun to light shade and irrigate occasionally to infrequently. We are not sure on the ultimate hardiness of this plant, though it has never been damaged at our nursery in the years we have grown it, going unscathed during our January 2007 freeze with 3 nights of short term temperatures down to 25F and likewise was not damaged in inland north county San Diego gardens during the same freeze with temperatures that were slightly less. This plant was first collected from a garden in Morocco and distributed by the Huntington Botanic Garden as Senecio amaniensis, a plant native to the tropical forested Amani region in the Usambara Mountains of Tanzania. We grew it under this name until 2010 when John Trager, the Huntington Botanic Garden's succulent garden curator noted that this plant was actually Senecio decaryi, a plant that comes from Madagascar. The true Senecio amaniensis, which we also now grow, has longer, thinner and softer less prominently veined leaves and orange ray-less flowers that have a slight fetid aroma.  Information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it. We also will incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips would aid others in growing Senecio decaryi.