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Tetrapanax Papyrifer Rex

TopiariaTopiaria Posts: 3
After a monumental bidding war on e-bay I managed to acquire my very own tetrapanax papyrifer rex. I am worried about putting it in the ground because the consensus is that it is hugely invasive. Can T-Rex be grown in a container, and what kind of soil and feeding regime is best? 


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 16,538
    Judging by the fact it is difficult to get hold of, I have never heard of it being invasive, otherwise there would be lots available for sale.  It does need a good size space to grow in, so probably not best as a container plant if you want to see it at it's best.  If it suckers, can I have one?
    According to RHS


    • Ultimate height 2.5-4 metres

    • Ultimate spread 1.5-2.5 metres

    • Time to ultimate height 2-5 years.

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 9,985
    I did consider getting one a while ago so done some reading up.
    From what I've read, it does sucker freely, but the suckers themselves take years to grow their own roots (before they can be removed from the parent), so there's a build-up of suckers.
    Quite a few times I've also read that they're not suitable for growing in containers.

    Magnificent plants though - hope you find the right place for it after your hard-won bidding war
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • UpNorthUpNorth Posts: 376
    I have one in a largeish container outdoor all year.  Its deciduous in colder climate, but the advantage of container is you may be able to keep warm and thus leaves all year.

    After 3 years no suckers yet.

    Feed and water lots, as for all huge leaved plants.

    Hope that helps.

    Try caster oil plant from seed if you want a huge similar plant, much faster, but treat as annual.

    Hope that helps.

  • TopiariaTopiaria Posts: 3
    fidgitbones you can have one if it suckers, and I shall persevere. I have it in a 90 litre container at the moment. Will put it in a 150 litre one next year and see what happens. Lots of feed....what about epsom salts...would it like that du you think? 
  • This is a STAR PERFORMER in my garden. It's 4th year and has now reached nearly 3m (9 ft) tall. The largest leaf is 116cm across and it really is a monster.
    It has now produced several suckers in an area about 1.5m away, I'm leaving the best sucker (this has a leaf 60cm across, not bad for a 1 year old) because I'm hoping that this and the original plant will form a kind of arch over the existing path between them.
    I've put a sharp spade in the ground near the sucker to maybe sever it from the main plant. I've had to pick out about 4 other suckers that I noticed starting so it does need regular inspection to make sure it isn't getting out of control, but these sucker plants are easy to spot and they haven't affected any of the other nearby plants. 
    In the winter, the leaves gradually wilt and drop off leaving a relatively slim and straight stem with buds waiting for the next spring time. 
    It's in a shady bed but the top now being higher than the nearby fence means that it is getting a lot of light this year although the roots and lower part will remain in permanent shade.

  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 5,065
    That really is spectacular!
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