Pachypodium rosulatum is a shrubby perennial caudiciform plant with a bottle-shaped trunk, brownnish silver and almost spineless, about 10–15 centimetres (3.9–5.9 in) wide and about 20–35 centimetres (7.9–13.8 in) tall. From the caudex depart many thorny cylindrical arms, forming a shrub about 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) tall. The leaves, which fall in the dry season, form a rosette on the top of branches. They are deciduous, dark green, oblanceolate, ovate or elliptical and petiolated. The long-stalked flowers are sulphur-yellow and form an inflorescence about 30 centimetres (12 in) high. Flowering period extends from February through May. The fruits are 6 to 20 inches long and contain elongated seeds with a length of 6 mm.
This plant is native to Madagascar and it is widespread on the central plateau.
These plants prefer sunny and stony areas. The succulent caudex and the underground tuberous enable the plant to tolerate long periods of drought.
Elephant’s foot yellow flower in the Isalo National Park, Madagascar
Elephant’s foot flowering in the Isalo National Park, Madagascar
Plant of Pachypodium rosulatum gracilius in the Isalo National Park, Madagascar
Flower of Pachypodium rosulatum, Conservatoire botanique national de Brest, France
Close-up on a flower of Pachypodium rosulatum in the Tower Hill Botanic Garden, Boylston, Massachusetts, USA.
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- Journal of Botany, British and Foreign. London 20:219. 1882
- Rapanarivo SHJV, Lavranos JJ, Leeuwenberg AJM Pachypodium (Apocynaceae): taxonomy, habitats and cultivation CRC Press, 1999