Dizygotheca, commonly called False Aralia, is a tall multiple stemmed plant with flourishes of elegant narrow, serrated leaves in deep, glossy, almost black green. Young leaves are coppery colored. Dizygotheca is often sold as Aralia.
Get to Know Dizygotheca—False Aralia
- Plant type: Tropical broadleaf evergreen shrub
- Growing Zones and range: 10-11
- Hardiness: Grows in average to warm household temperatures.
- Height and width: Grows up to 6 feet (1.8m) tall and 18 to 24 inches wide.
- Foliage: Leaves divide like fans into long, very narrow leaflets with notched edges—4 to 9 inches long and about ½ inch wide; leaves are shiny dark green on top and reddish beneath. As plants mature, leaves grow bigger with coarsely notched leaflets u to 12 inches long.
- Flowers: Dizygotheca rarely flowers.
- Uses: Houseplant
- Botanical name: Dizygotheca elegantissima (sometimes sold under the botanical name Aralia elegantissima)
- Common name: False Aralia
Where to Plant Dizygotheca—False Aralia
- Dizygotheca prefers medium to bright, filtered light. Older plants will adapt to less light. Grows well under artificial light, needing 14 to 16 hours of light daily.
- Pot Dizygotheca in an all-purpose potting soil that drains quickly.
How to Water and Feed Dizygotheca—False Aralia
- Keep the soil evenly moist; allowing the soil to dry out will cause leaves to drop. Use a tray with pebbles to raise the humidity around the plant. Mist twice daily.
- Fertilize Dizygotheca with a 10-10-10 fertilizer three times during the summer; do not fertilize in winter.
Dizygotheca—False Aralia Care
- Dizygotheca naturally loses lower leaves as it ages.
- Improper watering—dry or waterlogged—will cause leaves to drop.
- Dizygotheca prefers to be potbound; repot when roots occupy more than ¾ of pot space in early spring.
- Clean foliage with a cloth monthly.
- Let Dizygotheca rest from fall to early spring in a cool spot 50° to 60°F (13°-16°C); withhold fertilizer.
- Dizygotheca is occasionally attacked by aphids, mealybugs, red spider mites, scale, or thrips.
Dizygotheca—False Aralia Propagation
- Propagate Dizygotheca by stem cuttings.
Dizygotheca—False Aralia Varieties to Grow
- D. elegantissima has a distinctive dark stem with creamy mottling; leaflets have toothed edges.
- D. veitchii has green leaflets with waxy, toothed edges, and copper-colored undersides with white midribs.