Sapium Sebiferum "Chinese Tallow" Seeds
“This tree is native to southern China, where a substantial industry once revolved around the harvesting and processing of its waxy seeds. They were thrown into boiling water to remove the wax, which was skimmed off and used to make candles. The seeds were then pressed to extract an oil for use in lamps, as a purgative, and for making oil-paper and soap. These days Chinese tallow tree is grown mostly as an ornamental, and it is one of the few deciduous trees to produce good autumn colour in areas with mild winters.
This is a deciduous tree to around 8m (25′) tall with a medium domed crown. In autumn the mid-green leaves turn crimson, with some yellow, orange and ruby-red foliage. In November and December greenish yellow flower spikes appear on the tips of the branches, followed by 3-celled capsules. The fruit ripens and turns brown in autumn, then splits open to reveal three seeds which are covered with a layer of pure white wax.
Chinese tallow tree grows from cool to subtropical zones. Grow in a warm sheltered microclimate in frost prone areas and protect trees when young. Beautiful orange, red, purple and yellow autumn foliage provides autumn colour in climates with mild winters good street tree or small tree for the home garden insect and disease free drought tolerant once established like other members of the family Euphorbiaceae, the stems contain an irritant milky sap birds disperse the seeds, which germinate easily, sometimes in places where they are not wanted!
Chinese tallow tree will grow in most soils, but prefers a well-drained sandy loam enriched with organic matter. Water well until the tree becomes established. Plant in a warm sunny position for best autumn colour.
Plants for sale are usually grown from seed and the colour of their autumn display will vary greatly. To make sure you know exactly how your tree will perform buy one in autumn”. - Burke’s Backyard 2018
“Although seed can be sown most of the year in Australia seed is generally best sown in spring or autumn, avoid the coldest and hottest months of the year. The optimum germination temperature for germination is around 18-22°C
Cold stratification is recommended.
Cold treatment may not be critical for germination to occur in colder regions but should give increased germination rates.
This can be replicated by cold stratification in the refrigerator for 6-8 weeks. Alternatively over wintering in the garden in cold climates will assist germination.
Soak in water overnight.
Sow seed the depth of the seed width.
Water with fine mist spray to avoid disturbance of the seed.
Ensure the mix is moist but not water logged.
Place the container in plastic bag.
Place the bagged container in the refrigerator for 6-8 weeks.
Germination generally occurs in 14-28 days when moved to warmer temperatures after the period of cold treatment.
General note: Seeds of many natives are dormant and require specific conditions or pre-treatment for germination.
Do not be too hasty to discard seed that does not germinate, seeds will often lay dormant until the conditions are similar to their natural requirements for germination to occur. Containers put to one side will often surprise long after they were discarded.” - Growing Information from ‘Australian Seed’
*****Please note: We do NOT sell live plants at all!! Quarantine restrictions and inspection fees prohibit the sale of seeds to Western Australia and Internationally.