English name:Australian Chestnut
Latin name:Castanospermum australe
About me:I have a crown of dark green leaves which sit atop strong green stems with light brown freckles. The stems sprout from cracked-open chestnuts, at my base. I am also known as Moreton Bay Chestnut & Black Bean.
Useful to know:
I am native to the coastal rainforests and beaches of Australia.
I'm a slow grower but can become a large tree in my native Australia, where I can reach 40 meters.
I like a bright spot but keep me out of the midday sun.
Water me regularly, but only when the potting compost feels dry to the touch. Once a week should be enough.
I like the warmth: 18-23°C would be perfect. I don't like it when it gets too cold (under 10 degrees).
Feed me occasionally in spring and summer with an all-purpose fertiliser, or one especially for foliage plants.
Please spray and/or wipe my leaves regularly to prevent dust build up - you can even pop me under the shower occasionally.
If you want me to grow to a larger plant, transplant me into a larger pot. I will stay compact if not potted up.
My leaves and seeds are toxic, so I'm best kept away from pets.
Keep me dry in the winter, and I could produce sprays of red and yellow pea-shaped flowers. This isn't very easy to achieve in the living room but I can surprise you!