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Cycas sp. (Silver)

Thai Silver Sago

Native to mountain forests at moderate and high altitudes in Kanjanaburi province in western Thailand, this very attractive, undescribed species has only recently been discovered. It sports a beautiful crown of most stunning, silvery-white foliage, carried by short, stocky trunks often blackened by fire. In cultivation it should grow best in subtropical/warm temperate areas and should have no problem with an occasional light freeze.

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germination comments by our visitors
For general germination instructions click here.

Also see plant cultivation comments below.

Seeds from this species ...

... are average to germinate and need up to 6 months to sprout.
Soaked the seeds for three days and planted them in recycled vermiculite in ziplock bags (new vermiculite being hard to come by here in Uganda) Six out of twelve seeds germinated in that I could see the seeds split open. However mould covered the seeds and three died before rooting. The other three I planted in deep pots and three months later and two have produced a leaf each. I am still waiting for the third to put out a leaf a year later.
Submitted on 07/09/2013 by John Wright

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
All seeds rattled when they arrived. Soaked for three days during which most seeds swelled and split. Seeds were put in a dull white underbed storage container filled with enough sterillized(microwave) sand to cover seeds. seeds were kept very moist. Initially no heat mat was used but growth of tap root seemed to cease when temps dropped to low twenties celcius. With the mat in place and temps above thirty degrees root growth was swift. Planted in free draining mix of mostly pumice and ph neutral hydroponics potting mix with the green portion of the tap root left out of soil. Watered with trichoderma fungul solution and placed plastic clear cups over seed and left in shade.
Submitted on 30/11/2010 by Mark

... are easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Germination is very easy. Just put seeds for 1 day into a water. Then put them into a soil about 0. 5 cm deep. Within 1 week to 4 weeks a roots and then later on leaves will appear.
Submitted on 13/08/2008 by S.S.Ghosh

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Actually, 1 month is an understatement! I tried a different way with cycad seeds since they seem very much like reptile eggs! 135 seeds were presoaked for 5 days and then cleaned of their pulp. I just placed them on their side in a clear plastic container on clean moist newspaper which is much cleaner than soil and does not generate fungus. The container had a clear plastic sheet on the top with the lid over it keep the humidity even. Within the next day, I had 1 cracking and sending out a root. The rest cracked and germinated daily and I just picked them out and put them into 9in bags with 8in of bottom soil and just enough soil to cover the seed. Try this method and the germination container is much lighter and not messy at all. I have the same success with other cycad specieswith this method.
Submitted on 07/01/2008 by Tog Tan, Malaysia togtan@streamyx.com

... are average to germinate and need up to 6 months to sprout.
I have put large seeds in warm water for tow days first and changing water tow times daily, then inserted half of the seeds in their long side in medium which consisting of cocopeat, sand and some percentage perlite by placing in very light and warm location (no direct sunlight) and keeping the soil moist by misting water everyday. Its better to cover the seeds by polythine bag tow foots above the seed and making some tow inch in diameter holes for good air circulation. Because if the temprature gets hot inside the polythine bag willcause seed rot. Good Growing Best Regards M.Delshakibair
Submitted on 03/10/2007 by Manouchehr Delshakib delshakib@yahoo.com

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
When I first started buying palm seeds, I bought 10 Cyca SP. Silvers hoping to create some colour in the garden, but I left them in 3 days of water with the other palm seeds and while they immediately germinated in the water, they rotted soon after in their special peat mix. Only 1 survived, a freak no less that grows faster than any other cycad in my garden, leaving me to decide that Cyca SP Silver is of the harder seeds to carry through germination to sprouting. But I took the plunge again, bought another 10 and was determined to overcome my mistake of the past and forewent the process of soaking in water. I went back to nature and stuck them in my ready-made conservatory, planting them in black square pots, putting them in a rich six-month release peat, placing them on plastic shelves and covering them with a plastic partially transparent cover. Within 12 days, 6 of the 10 had germinated and I separated them from the rest, putting them on a slower watering regime. It was too easy. The other four remain dormant largely because the temperature has dropped in May 2007 Sao Paulo, Brazil, moving from 26-30C daily to 13-21C. The other four will probably not flourish until September and October when the temperature rises consistently back above the 20C mark. No worries, I have learned my lesson and have since returned to the site and ordered a pack of 10 Cyca Panzhihuaensis. Can't wait.
Submitted on 29/05/2007 by Anthony Dovkants adovkants@hotmail.com

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Soaked for 3 days after receiving the seeds in the post. Planted in 50x50x125 foresty tubes with 1 part sand, 1 part peatmoss, 1 part vermiculite, 1 part perlite, i part orhchid bark mix. 100% germination after 4 weeks.
Submitted on 27/03/2006 by Kurt kurteising@gmail.com

... are average to germinate and need up to 3 months to sprout.
Seeds germinate easily after initial holding period of a couple of months. Seeds placed on totally enclosed bed of moist perlite. Germinated at ~85F. Didn't get first leaves until at least 1 year from sprouting seed. One plant just got a first leaf after almost 2 years from germination. Sprouted seeds handled temps down to 38F just fine.
Submitted on 27/03/2006 by one of our visitors

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Purchased 10 seeds from yourselves rarepalmseeds.com, placed in a zip lock bag containing spagnum moss and perlite 60/40, placed in an airing cupboard with min/ max temperature of 22/30¡C. Within 3 weeks 9 seeds germinated, with just one rotting. Very easy and pleased all 9 have been potted up into 20 cm pots in a bark/peat/perlite mix. Am now looking forward to the first leaf. Good luck, Ron Miller.
Submitted on 29/01/2006 by RON MILLER RJM@RONDOR.FREESERVE.CO.UK

... are very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Recieved 10 Cycas sp. Silver, sowed using the baggy method, moss and perlite 60/40, placed in airing cupboard at 70/80F and in two weeks all ten have sprouted, am very pleased with my result. Seeds purchased from rarepalmseeds.com. Ron in the UK.
Submitted on 13/01/2006 by RON.MILLER RJM@RONDOR.FREESERVE.CO.UK

... are very easy to germinate.
Unbelieveable, this is the first time I have ever tried to germinate a Cyca seed or even a palm seed for that and Cyca sp. (Silver) was incredibly easy. Within 1-3 days, all seeds had opened and within a week they had all germinated. I am a complete novice and all I did was follow the rarepalmseeds.com instructions pack to the letter. I put all 10 Cyca seeds into a plastic cup and once every three hours I replaced the cold water with warm water that I had heated in the microwave oven for 20 seconds tops. I then left the cup of water next to the window so the late afternoon sun (Brazil, Sao Paulo) would help keep the water warm in the afternoon. Before day 2 was up I had already put 7 of the 10 seeds into plastic bags filled with a moist Brazilian equivalent of commercial peat (Biomix as it is known in Sao Paulo) and left it in a box in my panty to keep warm. And they rooted. Clearly, this is just the beginning and I am only into the second week of the process, but it is going to so well that I should be potting everything very soon. Thanks for supplying such good quality seeds, I had never tried rarepalmseeds.com before and was worried that the seeds would be either damaged in the post or not of good quality. Cheers from a Brit in Brazil.
Submitted on 06/01/2006 by Anthony adovkants@hotmail.com

...very easy to germinate and need up to 1 month to sprout.
Very easy germinates. I had leave seeds in water about 20 oC and for 1 week 80% of seeds open, and until 1 week a sprout have been created.
Submitted on 22/04/2005 by one of our visitors

...very easy to germinate and need up to 6 months to sprout.
I have submerge the seeds in water for more or less 60 hours. Then I put them 10 seeds per baggy filled with my own germination mix. Then I placed them in an modified chicken incubator at a day and night tempreture of 28C. The first ones started to germinate after about 6 weeks. They take up to 6 months to germinate and one year to push leaves. I still have one seedling out of 20 that over a period of 14 months has not push a leave. On the contrary I have one seedling in the batch that has pushed 5 leaves allready (may be a freak).
Submitted on 30/11/2004 by Dr Andre Niemand kinglion@mweb.co.za

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plant cultivation comments by our visitors
Also see germination commnets above.

Plants from this species ...

... are of high ornamental value
In Southampton in England they need average care and grow slow.
I have had good success growing this plant in extremely free draining cactus compost. I grew this plant from seed and now at about 3 years old, the plant has only produced 2 leaves, making it a slow growing plant by cycad standards. However the small green fronds are very attractive right from day one as with all cycads. I grow the plant in a heated greenhouse and it does best in partial shade, as the leaf colour started to fade when in a position of persistent full sun. I water the plant fairly frequently during the summer, allowing a brief drying between waterings, but water sparingly in winter, allowing regular dry periods. I ventilate the greenhouse regularly to allow air movement around the plant. The plant has tolerated a temperature of 0c for short periods when dry.
Submitted on 17/01/2009 by James Barnet

win € 75 worth of seeds
by writing a plant cultivation comment about how to cultivate the plants of this species. Click here!

If you wish to read more on palm cultivation, we highly recommend Ornamental Palm Horticulture by Timothy K. Broschat and Alan W. Meerow, available in our bookshop.

Ratings and comments reflect individual experiences and the views of our visitors. They do not necessarily describe the most appropriate methods, nor are they necessarily valid for all seeds or plants of this species. Germination and plant cultivation success depends on many different factors; nevertheless, these experiences will hopefully aid you in your effort to get the best germination results from our seeds and the best growth results from your plants.

We recommend:
The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms
by Robert Lee Riffle, Paul Craft, Scott Zona

2nd edition
Completely revised and updated

Hardcover - 528 pages
11 x 8.5 inches

Our rating:
Suitable for: all

The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is the definitive account of all palms that can be grown for ornamental and economic use. Palms are often underutilized as a result of their unfamiliarity—even to tropical gardeners. To help introduce these valuable plants to a new audience, the authors have exhaustively documented every genus in the palm family.
825 species are described in detail, including cold hardiness, water needs, height, and any special requirements. Generously illustrated with more than 900 photos, including photos of several palm species that have never before appeared in a general encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Cultivated Palms is as valuable as an identification guide as it is a practical handbook. Interesting snippets of history, ethnobotany, and biology inform the text and make this a lively catalog of these remarkable plants.

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