Safari Conebush (Leucadendron ‘Safari Sunset’) resulted from the cross-breeding between a Leucadendron laureolum with Leucadendron salignum in New Zealand in the 1960s.
This is a robust, tall, and upright growing shrub with green leaves and deep, red-coloured bracts appearing on long stems in late summer. This shrub is a hardy cultivar that can withstand winter, alkalinity, and clay soils.
The Leucadendron Safari Sunset is a beautiful garden plant that may be used as a specimen, a hedge, or a windscreen. The plant’s awe-striking beauty has allowed it to maintain its position as one of the most coveted long-growing Proteaceae cut flower plants.
Moreover, the Leucadendron Safari Sunset is a dioecious plant. This means that the plant comes in male and female varieties.
While dense flower heads are common to both of these varieties, the flowers of the male variety are considered more beautiful than their female counterparts. However, female flowers are necessary because they produce the seeds and cones of the plant.
The Main Features of a Leucadendron Safari Sunset
Size & Growth
One of the reasons why this particular variety of the Leucadendron species is popular among home gardeners is because this plant does not occupy a lot of space. So, it beautifies homes and gardens while leaving room for gardeners and collectors to house more plants inside their gardens.
The Leucadendron Safari Sunset is a tiny shrub that stays erect when it is properly taken care of. Overall, this shrub will grow about 3 feet tall when it reaches maturity (in some cases, this plant has also been known to grow over 9 – 10 feet in height).
However, there is no fixed rule; the Leucadendron Safari Sunset comes in varieties. Some of them are known to grow into average-sized trees that reach over 51 feet in height.
Flowering & Fragrance
The Leucadendron Sunset Safari blooms tiny flowers with beautiful petals of vibrant colours. Every single stalk of this plant produces inflorescences and spreads about 12 inches in width.
How to take care of your Leucadendron Safari Sunset – Top 6 ways
Overall, these plants don’t need to be watered frequently. All you need to do to meet this plant’s watering needs is to (occasionally) check the dryness of the soil it is planted in. whenever you find dry soil, you may water this plant. Whatever you do, though, do not over-water this plant; you will cause it serious damage.
Although this plant is pretty low maintenance and will generally not depend on fertilizers for its proper growth, there is never any harm in making use of fertilizers to boost its growth.
The Leucadendron Safari Sunset will thrive if you give it low concentrations of any natural fertilizer. We recommend that you fertilize your plant once every year to ensure its healthy growth.
Typically, Leucadendron plants grow best when they’re kept in the full sun. These plants should be exposed to the direct sun for at least 8 hours a day. So, it will be best to plant them outside in your garden where they will get this exposure.
Temperature and humidity
Make sure you provide your plant with a humid growing environment where there is good air circulation, and the necessary temperature conditions of this plant are met.
Overall, the Leucadendron Safari Sunset is best suited to grow in USDA zones 9b -10b. This plant is pretty heat resistant, though; it can survive temperatures as low as -6 degrees Celsius.
Ensure your plant’s proper growth by keeping it in well-draining soil. The nutritional composition of the soil is relatively not that important (this plant is capable of growing pretty well even with standard potting soil), but you should never compromise on the drainage properties of the soil you house this plant in.
Here is a useful tip that will help you improve your soil’s drainage: Poke tiny holes at the bottom of the pot you’ve kept your plant in. This will act as an escape from any excess water trapped in the soil.
As we mentioned earlier, this plant is pretty low maintenance; hence it generally won’t require a lot of grooming on your part.
However, if you notice a few out-grown branches that are ruining your plant’s looks, you should cut them off for a tidier display. Pruning dead leaves and branches come with the added benefit of keeping your plant in good health.
When you remove dead leaves or branches from your plant, you significantly bring down the chances of your plant catching diseases.
For good measure, prune your plant every few couples of months to keep its branches tamed and to protect it from diseases and stunted growth.
How to Propagate your Leucadendron Safari Sunset
All gardeners must know how to propagate their plants correctly. In this section, we will walk you through the steps you need to follow to propagate a Leucadendron Safari Sunset plant inside your home successfully.
Here are the steps you need to follow to propagate this plant using seeds:
- The optimal growth period for this plant is during the spring season. So, it would be best if you tried to wait for spring to begin this process for the best results.
- Get the seeds for this plant from an existing mother plant or from your local nursery.
- Sow these seeds in nutritious, well-draining soil about an inch or two deep beneath its surface.
- To optimize the soil, try mixing gypsum, clay, and pumice sand into your potting mix. This will improve the drainage properties of your soil.
- Keep the soil moist; water it each time the upper inches of the soil dry out.
- Germination will take around 20 to 60 days, depending on how well you care for your plant.
- All you need to do now is wait for your plant to grow out.
The Leucadendron Safari Sunset is a beautiful shrub that will make for an excellent addition to your collection of houseplants. To ensure proper care of your plant, make sure you follow the caring tips summarized below:
- Water sparingly
- Keep your plant in humid environments at room temperature where there is good air circulation.
- Prune your plant occasionally to remove dead leaves and branches, and
- Make sure you expose your plant to the full sun by keeping it outdoors
For those of you who wish to propagate your own Leucadendron Safari Sunset, the propagation method (via seeds) is outlined in the section above.