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Aphananthe Philippinensis Rough Leaf Elm Tree Seeds
Packet of 10+ freshly harvested seeds!
These guys are delicious and I reckon they really should really be more common not just as a revegetation species, but as a fruit in their own right.
It’s natural range is from the middle of NSW, right up the QLD coast, throught the Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea and the Philipines.
It has tiny insignificant flowers of both sexes and is a member of the Cannabaceae family.
The two small sweet tasting hairs which protrude from the ripe fruit are very visually reminiscent to Cannabis which is unsurprisingly also a member of the Cannabaceae family.
It is super hardy and can handle anything from moist rainforest gullies and creeklines, all the way through to rocky dry outcrops, or barren dry sandy riverbanks.
The fully ripe golden yellow fruit tastes like baked or stewed apple but even better.
Very very tasty, and when they fruit you can pick heaps in a very short amount of time.
Unfortunately they only fruit every few years in the bush here.
Seems to be 30% of the trees in one area, then the next year 30% of the trees in another area.
I suspect in good conditions with regular watering and the occasional feed this would become more frequent, but mine are not old enough yet, so can’t say for sure.
I can say they are really are worth the wait though!
Here the birds hammer them and I reckon there are at least a dozen species making use of them, fig birds, king parrots, green parrots, honey eaters, custard heads, doves, lorikeets, you name it.
There are also numerous butterflies that have this as their host species, along with the water dragons, frilled lizards and bearded dragons who use them as ambush spots and as cover from predators, and the hawks and eagles circle constantly attracted to the many little finches, sparrows and doves feasting on the fruit.
Very cool to see and I spent ages just hanging around watching the action.
Common names include axehandle wood, greyhandle wood, native elm, grey handle wood, axe handle wood, rough leaved hickory, and asbestos tree.
This is due to the very dense hardwearing timber, and as the names suggest it was used extensively for tool handles.
Makes great digging sticks, fishing poles and handspears too.
Germination is slow but reliable and for me here it is anything from 1-6 months.
I tried using smoked vermiculite and it didn’t have any noticeable effects, GA3 caused a low % of rapid germination within a couple weeks, but the seedlings produced were far weaker and for this reason I just recommend patience.
Plant them shallowly in a nice sandy soil mix and keep them moist and in theory each pack should give you 5-10 seedlings, all ready to plant out by the following year.
Wild harvested sustainably, no chems, no nasties, no problems!!!