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Cycad on the move

I HAVE a metre high sago palm growing in a place where it is competing with other plants and I'd dearly like to shift it to another part of the garden or into a large pot. I would like to know if it is the right time to do it now and how could I do it without too much fuss.


SAGO palms (Cycas revoluta) are relatively easy to transplant and now is as good a time as any to do it.

The leaves are rather prickly, so to protect yourself and reduce the risk of damage to the plant, wrap them tightly with old blankets or the likes.

You don't have to take a large amount of the root system to be successful. Use a sharp spade to dig about 30cm out from the trunk, going down about a spade depth and cutting cleanly through the roots as you go. Then use the spade or a long-handled shovel to lever the plant up out of the ground. You may have to cut through some more roots as you lift.

Gently drag the plant or carry it to its new position and replant or pot into a large container. Water well to settle the soil, then release the leaves from their wrappings.

Good luck and be careful - a metre high sago palm will be quite a heavy load to move.

Weekend Gardener, Issue 152, 2004, Page 26

Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.

Andrew Maloy Weekend Gardener

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