Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &
Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra &

Introducing the marvelous Trailing Elephant Bush, known as Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata', a stunning variety of the Portulacaria afra! This extraordinary succulent groundcover, also known as Spekboom or elephant food plant, is a true showstopper, boasting undeniable hardiness and enchanting beauty.

Wherever it grows, its outstanding glossy leaves, which are perfectly rounded and glisten with a hint of elegance, will captivate them with an allure that is impossible to resist. Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata' is a small, low-growing succulent that typically reaches a mature size of 6–12 inches in height and spreads up to 3–4 feet wide. Its compact and trailing growth habit makes it an excellent choice for ground cover or cascading over walls or containers.

The flowers of the trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata are typically pink or pale purple and add a delightful touch to the plant's overall appearance. However, it's important to note that flowering is not as common in Portulacaria afra prostrata compared to other succulents. So, while the focus is mostly on its trailing growth and vibrant leaves, the occasional burst of blooms can be a pleasant surprise!

When it comes to propagating elephant bush Portulacaria afra prostrata, it can be done through stem cuttings and leaf cuttings. With time and proper care, the cutting will develop roots and grow into a new plant. Both methods can be successful in propagating this lovely succulent.

Additionally, the Portulacaria afra prostrata variety is generally considered safe for both humans and pets. This means you can enjoy the beauty of this plant without worrying about any harmful effects if accidentally ingested.

Watering Needs

This variety of dwarf jade is a succulent plant that doesn't need too much water. Overwatering can lead to root rot, so it's important to let the soil dry out completely between waterings. Water your elephant food plant when the soil is dry to the touch, but not bone dry. During the summer months, you may need to water your elephant plant more frequently than in the winter (dormant).  

When watering your trailing elephant bush, make sure to give it a thorough soak. Water the soil around this dwarf jade bonsai until it starts to drain out of the bottom of the pot. Empty any excess water from the saucer underneath the pot to prevent the roots from sitting in standing water. With proper watering, your trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata will thrive and grow beautiful trailing stems! 

Light Requirements

When grown indoors, the Portulacaria afra prostrata prefers bright, indirect sunlight.  Place your trailing plant in a location that receives bright light for most of the day. If you notice that the leaves are turning yellow or brown, it may be a sign that this succulent elephant bush is getting too much light. 

If you are growing your trailing elephant bush outdoors, it can tolerate some full sunlight for at least 4-6 hours a day, but too much can scorch the leaves. 

If you don't have a bright spot in your home, you can still grow a trailing elephant bush! These elephant bushes can tolerate lower light conditions, but they may not grow as quickly or produce as many leaves.  

You can also supplement your Portulacaria afra prostrata light with a grow light. Place the grow light a few inches above the Portulacaria afra prostrata and keep it on for 12-14 hours a day.  

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer Needs

The trailing elephant bush Portulacaria afra prostrata prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic. You can use a succulent soil mix or make your own by combining regular potting soil with sand or perlite. Here at Planet Desert, we have a specialty-formulated succulent potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your succulent to thrive. Make sure the pot has a drainage hole to allow excess water to escape.  

When it comes to fertilizing your Portulacaria afra prostrata, less is more. It doesn't need a lot of fertilizer to thrive. You can fertilize your succulent plant once a year during the growing season (spring) with a balanced fertilizer of NPK (5-10-5). Don't fertilize your  plant during the winter months, when it's not actively growing. With proper soil and fertilizer, your trailing elephant bush will thrive and grow beautiful trailing stems! 

Hardiness Zone & More

The ideal temperature for indoor trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata is 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit, they can survive moderate winter temperatures as long as the soil is not wet, and the temperature does not drop below 45 F. They ought to be overwintered indoors to prevent harm from freezing weather. 

The Portulacaria species can't stand frost or too much humidity, therefore it needs warm, dry conditions. A well-draining potting mix and drainage holes in the potting container will help you maintain temperatures and prevent too much moisture. They can therefore be cultivated outside in USDA zone 9.  

Final Thoughts

Whether you're looking for an eye-catching addition to your rockery or envisioning cascading elegance down slopes and embankments, this Trailing Elephant Bush is here to make all your green dreams come true! Be sure to add Portulacaria afra prostrata - Trailing elephant bush to your collection today and elevate the beauty of your home or garden, with this stunning-looking plant. 

Bloom Season Spring, early summer
Botanical Name Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata'
Common Name Trailing elephant bush, Spekboom, elephant food plant
Dormancy Winter
Family Didiereaceae
Flower Color Pink, lavender
Genus Portulacaria
Growth Habit Trailing/hanging
Growth Rate Slow
Hardiness Zone 9, 10
Mature Size 12 in. tall, 4 ft. wide
Native Area South Africa
Plant Type Perennial succulent
Propagation By stem, leaf cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, heat resistant, pest resistant, deer resistant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type specialty-formulated succulent potting mix
Special Features Easy to grow
Sun Exposure Full sun, Partial shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, friendly to dogs, friendly to cats
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Trailing Elephant Bush

The trailing elephant bush is generally a hardy dwarf jade plant, but it can be susceptible to a few pests and problems. Here are some common issues to watch out for: 

Mealybugs: These small, white insects can be found on the leaves and stems. They suck sap from the elephant food plant and can cause stunted growth and yellowing leaves. To get rid of mealybugs, wipe them off the plant with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. 

Spider mites: These little bugs can be found on the undersides of the leaves. They suck sap from the elephant food plant and can cause yellowing leaves and webbing. To get rid of spider mites, rinse this dwarf jade with a strong stream of water or use an insecticidal soap. 

Overwatering: Overwatering can lead to root rot. Signs of overwatering include yellowing leaves, mushy stems, and a foul odor. If you suspect that your trailing elephant bush is being overwatered, let the soil dry out completely before watering again. 

Underwatering: On the other hand, underwatering can cause the leaves to shrivel and turn brown. Make sure to water your dwarf jade when the soil is dry to the touch. 

Lack of humidity: The trailing elephant bush prefers moderate to high humidity. If the air is too dry, the leaves may turn brown and crispy. You can increase the humidity around your elephant bush by misting it with water or placing a tray of water near the plant.  

With proper care and attention, your trailing elephant bush should be able to avoid these pests and problems! 

FAQs - Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata'

How do you take care of a trailing elephant bush?

To care for a trailing elephant bush (Portulacaria afra Prostrata), provide full sunlight to partial shade for at least 4-6 hours daily, avoid overwatering, use well-draining soil, increase humidity by misting or placing a tray, and fertilize once a year during the growing season in the spring. Pruning helps maintain shape and encourages bushier growth. Proper care will ensure your trailing elephant bush thrives and looks beautiful.

How much sun does a Portulacaria afra Prostrata need?

Portulacaria afra Prostrata typically requires a moderate amount of sun exposure. It thrives best in bright light, so placing it near a window with filtered sunlight or in a partially shaded area would be ideal. However, it is important to avoid exposing it to intense, direct sunlight for prolonged periods as this can lead to sunburn and damage your succulent leaves. 

Is Elephant Bush an indoor or outdoor plant?

Elephant Bush is typically both an indoor and outdoor plant, as it thrives in warm and dry conditions. You can grow it outside if you live in a warm climate with temperatures no lower than 30 degrees Fahrenheit in USDA zones 9-11. And if you reside in a cooler region, you can grow elephant bush as a low-maintenance houseplant.  

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Trailing Elephant Bush - Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata'

sku: 2474

Regular price$ 25.50
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Please note: All Landscape Ready plants that are in a 6-inch pot or larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

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Please note: Our large plants are many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive 100% healthy and looking great.

Please note: Our large plants are shipped bare root. They are also many years old, and as a result, they might have minor scaring but will arrive healthy and looking great.

If you live in a cold climate and are expecting temperatures below 40 degrees within the next five days after placing your order, we highly recommend adding a heat pack to your order. If you do not order a heat pack, we do not send one with your order.

BUY HEAT PACKS HERE

**FREE HEAT PACK WITH ORDERS OVER $50 before taxes and shipping- BY REQUEST ONLY, PLEASE MAKE A NOTE ON YOUR ORDER.

To prevent plants from freezing while in transit, orders placed for areas with extreme severe freezing temperatures will be held for shipment until it is safe to ship.

Plants that are in 3.5" pots and smaller will be shipped in its pot to prevent any damage to the roots. Any plant that is 6" and larger WILL NOT come with a pot as it will be shipped bare root.

Depending on the species and season, you will receive a very similar plant to the one in the picture. It may or may not be blooming at the time of your purchase.

We ship via USPS Priority Mail, and we calculate the shipping cost based on the weight and volume of your purchase. Care instructions are included in every package you order. Please allow us up to 3 business days to process your order. Depending on your location, we will ship the plants on a certain day to avoid transit time during weekends or holidays. If you wish to receive your order on a specific date, or have special instructions, please add a note on your order. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at any time.

  • Description
  • Key Plant Features

Introducing the marvelous Trailing Elephant Bush, known as Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata', a stunning variety of the Portulacaria afra! This extraordinary succulent groundcover, also known as Spekboom or elephant food plant, is a true showstopper, boasting undeniable hardiness and enchanting beauty.

Wherever it grows, its outstanding glossy leaves, which are perfectly rounded and glisten with a hint of elegance, will captivate them with an allure that is impossible to resist. Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata' is a small, low-growing succulent that typically reaches a mature size of 6–12 inches in height and spreads up to 3–4 feet wide. Its compact and trailing growth habit makes it an excellent choice for ground cover or cascading over walls or containers.

The flowers of the trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata are typically pink or pale purple and add a delightful touch to the plant's overall appearance. However, it's important to note that flowering is not as common in Portulacaria afra prostrata compared to other succulents. So, while the focus is mostly on its trailing growth and vibrant leaves, the occasional burst of blooms can be a pleasant surprise!

When it comes to propagating elephant bush Portulacaria afra prostrata, it can be done through stem cuttings and leaf cuttings. With time and proper care, the cutting will develop roots and grow into a new plant. Both methods can be successful in propagating this lovely succulent.

Additionally, the Portulacaria afra prostrata variety is generally considered safe for both humans and pets. This means you can enjoy the beauty of this plant without worrying about any harmful effects if accidentally ingested.

Watering Needs

This variety of dwarf jade is a succulent plant that doesn't need too much water. Overwatering can lead to root rot, so it's important to let the soil dry out completely between waterings. Water your elephant food plant when the soil is dry to the touch, but not bone dry. During the summer months, you may need to water your elephant plant more frequently than in the winter (dormant).  

When watering your trailing elephant bush, make sure to give it a thorough soak. Water the soil around this dwarf jade bonsai until it starts to drain out of the bottom of the pot. Empty any excess water from the saucer underneath the pot to prevent the roots from sitting in standing water. With proper watering, your trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata will thrive and grow beautiful trailing stems! 

Light Requirements

When grown indoors, the Portulacaria afra prostrata prefers bright, indirect sunlight.  Place your trailing plant in a location that receives bright light for most of the day. If you notice that the leaves are turning yellow or brown, it may be a sign that this succulent elephant bush is getting too much light. 

If you are growing your trailing elephant bush outdoors, it can tolerate some full sunlight for at least 4-6 hours a day, but too much can scorch the leaves. 

If you don't have a bright spot in your home, you can still grow a trailing elephant bush! These elephant bushes can tolerate lower light conditions, but they may not grow as quickly or produce as many leaves.  

You can also supplement your Portulacaria afra prostrata light with a grow light. Place the grow light a few inches above the Portulacaria afra prostrata and keep it on for 12-14 hours a day.  

Optimal Soil & Fertilizer Needs

The trailing elephant bush Portulacaria afra prostrata prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic. You can use a succulent soil mix or make your own by combining regular potting soil with sand or perlite. Here at Planet Desert, we have a specialty-formulated succulent potting mix that contains 5 natural substrates and organic mycorrhizae to promote the development of a strong root system that helps your succulent to thrive. Make sure the pot has a drainage hole to allow excess water to escape.  

When it comes to fertilizing your Portulacaria afra prostrata, less is more. It doesn't need a lot of fertilizer to thrive. You can fertilize your succulent plant once a year during the growing season (spring) with a balanced fertilizer of NPK (5-10-5). Don't fertilize your  plant during the winter months, when it's not actively growing. With proper soil and fertilizer, your trailing elephant bush will thrive and grow beautiful trailing stems! 

Hardiness Zone & More

The ideal temperature for indoor trailing Portulacaria afra prostrata is 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit, they can survive moderate winter temperatures as long as the soil is not wet, and the temperature does not drop below 45 F. They ought to be overwintered indoors to prevent harm from freezing weather. 

The Portulacaria species can't stand frost or too much humidity, therefore it needs warm, dry conditions. A well-draining potting mix and drainage holes in the potting container will help you maintain temperatures and prevent too much moisture. They can therefore be cultivated outside in USDA zone 9.  

Final Thoughts

Whether you're looking for an eye-catching addition to your rockery or envisioning cascading elegance down slopes and embankments, this Trailing Elephant Bush is here to make all your green dreams come true! Be sure to add Portulacaria afra prostrata - Trailing elephant bush to your collection today and elevate the beauty of your home or garden, with this stunning-looking plant. 

Bloom Season Spring, early summer
Botanical Name Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata'
Common Name Trailing elephant bush, Spekboom, elephant food plant
Dormancy Winter
Family Didiereaceae
Flower Color Pink, lavender
Genus Portulacaria
Growth Habit Trailing/hanging
Growth Rate Slow
Hardiness Zone 9, 10
Mature Size 12 in. tall, 4 ft. wide
Native Area South Africa
Plant Type Perennial succulent
Propagation By stem, leaf cuttings
Resistance Drought tolerant, heat resistant, pest resistant, deer resistant
Soil PH 6.5, Acidic, Neutral
Soil Type specialty-formulated succulent potting mix
Special Features Easy to grow
Sun Exposure Full sun, Partial shade
Toxicity Safe for humans, friendly to dogs, friendly to cats
Watering Needs Low

Pests & Common Problems of Trailing Elephant Bush

The trailing elephant bush is generally a hardy dwarf jade plant, but it can be susceptible to a few pests and problems. Here are some common issues to watch out for: 

Mealybugs: These small, white insects can be found on the leaves and stems. They suck sap from the elephant food plant and can cause stunted growth and yellowing leaves. To get rid of mealybugs, wipe them off the plant with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. 

Spider mites: These little bugs can be found on the undersides of the leaves. They suck sap from the elephant food plant and can cause yellowing leaves and webbing. To get rid of spider mites, rinse this dwarf jade with a strong stream of water or use an insecticidal soap. 

Overwatering: Overwatering can lead to root rot. Signs of overwatering include yellowing leaves, mushy stems, and a foul odor. If you suspect that your trailing elephant bush is being overwatered, let the soil dry out completely before watering again. 

Underwatering: On the other hand, underwatering can cause the leaves to shrivel and turn brown. Make sure to water your dwarf jade when the soil is dry to the touch. 

Lack of humidity: The trailing elephant bush prefers moderate to high humidity. If the air is too dry, the leaves may turn brown and crispy. You can increase the humidity around your elephant bush by misting it with water or placing a tray of water near the plant.  

With proper care and attention, your trailing elephant bush should be able to avoid these pests and problems! 

FAQs - Portulacaria afra 'Prostrata'

How do you take care of a trailing elephant bush?

To care for a trailing elephant bush (Portulacaria afra Prostrata), provide full sunlight to partial shade for at least 4-6 hours daily, avoid overwatering, use well-draining soil, increase humidity by misting or placing a tray, and fertilize once a year during the growing season in the spring. Pruning helps maintain shape and encourages bushier growth. Proper care will ensure your trailing elephant bush thrives and looks beautiful.

How much sun does a Portulacaria afra Prostrata need?

Portulacaria afra Prostrata typically requires a moderate amount of sun exposure. It thrives best in bright light, so placing it near a window with filtered sunlight or in a partially shaded area would be ideal. However, it is important to avoid exposing it to intense, direct sunlight for prolonged periods as this can lead to sunburn and damage your succulent leaves. 

Is Elephant Bush an indoor or outdoor plant?

Elephant Bush is typically both an indoor and outdoor plant, as it thrives in warm and dry conditions. You can grow it outside if you live in a warm climate with temperatures no lower than 30 degrees Fahrenheit in USDA zones 9-11. And if you reside in a cooler region, you can grow elephant bush as a low-maintenance houseplant.  

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