The Oreopanax capitatus (Picon Tree) is a small to medium sized species native to Central America, known for its leathery oval-shaped glossy dark green leaves and its spectacular pointed tip. This small tree reaches between 10-20 feet in height when fully grown and is widely grown in areas of the United States that enjoy full sun or partial shade, such as in USDA Zones 9-11.
In order to successfully grow an Oreopanax capitatus, the plant requires regular watering, ideally with moderate amounts. In regions where the temperature drops during winter, it is best to grow it in a pot which can easily be moved indoors or sheltered in order to minimize the effects of the cold weather. Caring for an Oreopanax capitatus planted in a pot requires regular watering, use of a soil composed of good drainage, positioning of the pot in a spot that doesn't receive full sun, and the regular application of organic fertilizers to promote healthy, robust growth.
In addition to the proper watering and care of the soil, Oreopanax capitatus needs to be pruned regularly in order to maintain a neat, tidy shape, and to discourage the plant from growing too wide. Regular pruning encourages healthy branching, which in turn encourages more bushy, lush growth, and even helps to protect the plant from any errant weather. It is also important to remove any weeds that may be growing in the area where the Oreopanax capitatus resides, and to keep an eye on the overall health of the plant, since signs of distress can help you know when to intervene before the plant becomes irreparably damaged.
Overall, provided the proper conditions and care requires some effort, but the reward of being able to admire the tall shape of a fully grown Picon Tree and its lush dark green leaves makes this effort more than worth it.