False Aralia Information – How To Grow A False Aralia House Plant
What Is False Aralia?
False aralies are small succulent plants with large, round leaves. They have a very distinctive appearance and they look like tiny little snowflakes. There are many different species of false aralia but most of them grow only in the tropics or subtropical regions of the world. They usually do not get much sunlight and therefore their growth rate is slow. These plants need constant water and care because they will die if left without proper moisture. Some species are invasive and cause problems when grown indoors.
The False Aralia family includes over 100 genera and more than 500 species of flowering plants, shrubs, vines, ferns, mushrooms and other types of herbs and trees. Most false aralia are succulents which means they require a certain amount of light to survive. They also need a good soil pH level and a well-drained potting mix.
How Do You Grow A False Aralia?
Growing false aralia requires careful attention since these plants are fragile and easily damaged by poor care. When growing false aralia it is best to keep the temperature at least 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 C) during winter months. During the growing season, the temperature can be allowed to rise a bit.
This plant should be watered very sparingly during the winter months because it is in a dormant period. Like most succulents, this plant does not enjoy too much water since it can cause root rot. The soil should be allowed to dry out between waterings and then it should only be watered about once a week or less.
Since this plant does not get much light, it should be placed in an area where it will receive some natural light. However, the plant should not be placed in direct sunlight since this can burn the leaves and even kill the plant. Full sun can be harmful so the plant should not be placed in a window with direct exposure. It should also be placed at least a few feet away from any heating vents or air ducts. These plants do not like rapid changes in temperature or drafts.
The soil should be well drained and should not be allowed to become soggy. The soil should also be allowed to dry out completely before watering again. Overwatering is a common cause of false aralia death. It might be necessary to install a drainage tray if the pot seems to collect water at the bottom.
These plants like high humidity so it might be necessary to mist them with water once or twice each day. They can be misted with distilled water or a water with a very mild fertilizer added to it. Fertilizer should not be added to the soil since it can cause root damage.
The leaves of this plant are very delicate and they can easily be torn off if handled roughly. They should be cleaned gently with a soft cloth.
If grown as a houseplant, this plant can reach up to two feet tall and about a foot wide.
False Aralia Medicinal Uses
The roots, seeds and leaves have all been used to make medicine. The root has been used to treat diabetes, skin inflammation, sore throats, colds, diarrhea, sexually transmitted diseases and cancer. It is also used as a sedative and pain reliever by Native Americans. The leaves are used for treating skin irritation, ringworm and other fungal problems.
The seeds are poisonous and can be used to poison arrows.
False Aralia In The Home
These plants do not make good houseplants since they need a lot of light and they get very large. They can be grown outdoors in zones 10 through 12. They are drought-tolerant and can grow in sandy or clay soil. They can also grow in full sun to partial shade.
These plants are sometimes used for erosion control because of their extensive root systems.
These plants sometimes invade areas where they aren’t wanted because their seeds are spread by birds and animals that eat the fruit and then drop the seeds in another area. The seed can also float on the wind for up to a mile.
These plants have been called many different names including; Indian Fig, Bakers Aralia, California Ginseng, Hog Potato, Indian Potato and Wild Lemon.
Sources & references used in this article:
Growing indoor plants with success by SV Pennisi – 2009 – athenaeum.libs.uga.edu
Propogating house plants by PA Thomas – 2009 – athenaeum.libs.uga.edu
Safe and poisonous garden plants by AK Filmer, L Dodge – University of California, Davis. USA, 2012 – ucanr.edu
Interior Plants: Selection and Care by E Davison – 1998 – repository.arizona.edu
Houseplant Care by D Hillock, D Needham – 2006 – shareok.org
Care of house plants (revised 1970) by RE Widmer – 1970 – conservancy.umn.edu