Brachychiton rupestris, Queensland Bottle Tree

Brachychiton rupestris

Queensland Bottle Tree
Family: Malvaceae
Subfamily: Sterculioideae
Origin: Queensland (Australia)
USDA Zone: 9-11?
USDA Plant Hardiness MapPlant with caudexPlant used for bonsaiSmall tree 10-20 ftFull sunModerate waterYellow, orange flowersPink flowers

In cooler climates, Brachychiton rupestris can be grown in a pot if it is kept in a sunny position and watered regularly. The soil should be well drained and a slow release fertilizer applied in spring. If the temperature drops below zero, the pot can be moved to a sheltered area or moved indoors. The plant should be kept in a bright and sunny location, but sheltered from the wind. The pot should be watered regularly during the growing season and fertilized every few months. In winter, the plant should be kept dry and only watered occasionally. Pruning can be done to shape and maintain the size of the plant and to remove any dead or damaged branches. With careful attention, the bottle tree can be used as a Bonsai specimen. The bottle shaped trunk may start to be noticeable at around 5-8 years of age. The bell-shaped flowers are yellowish in clusters at the ends of the branches but are not especially conspicuous. The flowers are followed by seed capsules which contain many large seeds.

Overall, the Queensland Bottle Tree is an attractive, unusual and easy to grow plant.

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