Gastonia mauritiana, Bois Boeuf, Bois d'Eponge

Gastonia mauritiana

Bois Boeuf, Bois d'Eponge
Family: Araliaceae
Origin: Mauritius
Small tree 10-20 ftSemi-shadeFull sunModerate waterEthnomedical plant.
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It is an evergreen, small tree that grows up to 10-20 feet in height with a similar spread, featuring long, sessile, compound leaves made up of 6-15 oblong leaflets. It prefers full sun to semi-shade position, still requiring a good amount of sunlight to thrive. Medium water needs, no irrigation needed once fully established.

Gastonia mauritiana is native to Mauritius, an ethnomedical plant that has attractive round, leathery and glossy foliage. It has long, oval leaves which turn dark green as they mature. In winter, as temperature cools, it turns to deep burgundy red adding color to the garden. It is easy to care for, and responds well to pruning.

Gastonia mauritiana should be grown in USDA Zones 9 to 11 in well-draining soil and it does not tolerate excessive moisture or waterlogging. It prefers a slightly acidic soil for better growth and a moist, but well-drained soil with a concern for proper fertilization to extend its flowering season from spring to fall. This is a moderately drought-tolerant plant, so a thorough watering only when the top of the soil is dry.

In cold regions, Gastonia mauritiana should be grown in containers and brought indoors or placed in sheltered areas during winter, with the best possible light condition. Fertilizing container specimens should be done with a slow-release fertilizer every two to three months during active growth, and it is best to avoid pruning in winter months to prevent damage to the tender buds. It will appreciate regular misting during the summer months to keep the relative humidity higher, as it grows best with humidity of around 50-60%.

Gastonia mauritiana, Bois Boeuf, Bois d'Eponge

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