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by Rosemarie Gordon-Cole
‘Perfect’ is one of the words used to describe this unique plant. It is unique in that it has all the components needed to fertilize its own pollens!
This is possible as the Jamaican Caper is one of the few plants with both male and female components.
And with a little help from the wind, insects, animals or even us humans the J'can Caper is able to do its thing ensuring that its species will always be around.
A 3 – 10 inches brown pod appears after fertilization takes place and this is normally seen between July and September. When mature these pods are deep red and split open to show the seeds surrounded by a thick sticky substance which is a favorite with the birds.
Capparis Cynophallophora is the scientific name given to it. The origin of this tree like shrub is unknown but can be found in the following areas:
This salt and drought tolerant plant is perfect for hedging. The mature plant is approximately 6 - 30 feet tall, very thick and has a pyramidal shape which makes it the perfect plant to use for blocking out that view you have been dying to hide. They can however be trimmed to stay at 4 to 5 feet tall.
Here are some additional characteristics of the JamaicanCaper:
If you are not able to get a seedling from under a parent tree you can try any of the two methods below.
The ideal spot to start seedlings is a compost heap. The compost heap has the right temperature and moisture that make it the perfect environment for germination to take place. Within two to three weeks you should start seeing the emergence of saplings. Transplant when the plant is hardy enough to move.
If this is your choice of propagation it is best to cut from the base of the stems, which would leave you with buds and smaller stems. Even though this is a drought tolerant plant, in-order for the cutting to catch they will need to be watered at least once a day.
See Also: Jamaican Flowers
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