• AGM plants

    AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

    • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
    • Available to buy
    • Of good constitution
    • Essentially stable in form & colour
    • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases

Dioscorea elephantipes

Elephant's foot

AGM plants

AGM plants have been through a rigourous trial and assessment programme. They are:

  • Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
  • Available to buy
  • Of good constitution
  • Essentially stable in form & colour
  • Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases
Elephant's foot

© � RHS 1970

  • Other common names Elephant's foot
    Hottentot bread

    Tortoise plant

    see more
  • Synonyms Testudinaria elephantipes

  • Genus Dioscorea can be evergreen or deciduous, twining perennials with tuberous roots and simple or palmate leaves and small bell-shaped greenish or yellow flowers in racemes from the leaf axils

  • Family Dioscoreaceae / Dioscoreaceae

  • Species D. elephantipes is a deciduous climbing perennial growing from a large, partly exposed, rugged woody tuber, with heart-shaped blue-green leaves and racemes of tiny yellow flowers

  • Plant range South Africa

Characteristics

  • Foliage Deciduous

  • Habit Climbing

  • Hardiness

    Hardiness ratings

    All ratings refer to the UK growing conditions unless otherwise stated. Minimum temperature ranges (in degrees C) are shown in brackets

    • H1a - Under glass all year (>15C)
    • H1b - Can be grown outside in the summer (10 - 15)
    • H1c - Can be grown outside in the summer (5 - 10)
    • H2 - Tolerant of low temperatures, but not surviving being frozen (1 to 5)
    • H3 - Hardy in coastal and relatively mild parts of the UK (-5 to 1)
    • H4 - Hardy through most of the UK (-10 to -5)
    • H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
    • H6 - Hardy in all of UK and northern Europe (-20 to -15)
    • H7 - Hardy in the severest European continental climates (< -20)
    Old hardiness ratings

    While we update our systems with the new hardiness ratings you may still see old hardiness ratings in your search results. These are denoted as 'Old'.

    • H1 - Requires heated glass
    • H2 - Requires unheated glass
    • H3 - Hardy outside in some regions of the UK
    • H4 - Hardy throughout the UK
    • H1 + H3 - Requires heated glass but may be grown outside in summer

    For full details of the hardiness ratings see

    see more

    H1c

Colour

Sunlight

  • Full Sun

  • Aspect South-facing or East-facing

  • Exposure Sheltered

Soil

  • Chalk

    Loam

  • Chalk

    Sand

  • MoistureWell-drained

  • SoilLoam, Sand

  • pHAcid, Alkaline, Neutral

Size

  • Ultimate height

    0.5-1 metres

  • Ultimate spread

    0.5-1 metres

  • Time to ultimate height

    5-10 years

How to grow

Cultivation Under glass grow in gritty, very well-draining potting compost mulched with grit in full light. Water moderately when in growth and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser every two or three weeks; keep completely dry in winter. Suitable for a desert garden

Propagation Propagate by seed at 19 to 24 �C in spring or take softwood cuttings as young shoots arise from the tuber in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types Patio & Container Plants

How to care

Pruning Pruning group 11 in spring

Pests Aphids may be a problem

Diseases Generally disease free

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