Cycad, Multipinnate Cycad

Cycas debaoensis

Family: Cycadaceae
Genus: Cycas (SY-kas) (Info)
Species: debaoensis (de-bay-oh-EN-sis) (Info)



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)

12-15 ft. (3.6-4.7 m)

15-20 ft. (4.7-6 m)


USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade


Seed is poisonous if ingested

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Unknown - Tell us


Grown for foliage


Other details:

This plant may be considered a protected species; check before digging or gathering seeds

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:


Brentwood, California

Carlsbad, California

Garden Grove, California

Tulare, California

Visalia, California

Brandon, Florida

Loxahatchee, Florida

Ocala, Florida

Sumterville, Florida

Cayce, South Carolina

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 31, 2013, barryw from Cayce, SC (Zone 8a) wrote:

Barry, Cayce, SC. I have a plant that I left outside in a pot under a magnolia grandifolia and it suffered no damage what so ever.
My zone is 8a/b but this winter was milder with no temps below 23 Deg F. As the caudex is underground I plan to plant it in the ground this spring.


On Jan 15, 2012, vossner from Richmond, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I am presently overwintering in the garage. However, I have seen a 5 ft tree of c. debaoensis happily growing in somebody's garden in my town. She's had her plant for years. I intend to plant mine in a rather shady area, not too wet or dry. Since it was pricey, I will baby it for a while.

UPDATE July 2015. It has survived two years inground. Partial sun location with amended clay soil. Access to sprinkler head. Slow growing but so far so good.


On Dec 16, 2009, krishnaraoji88 from Ocala, FL wrote:

This plant will definitely grow in colder than 10a. I have three here in zone 9a under a light canopy and they are doing well. They were defoliated this past winter at 22 degrees (unusually cold) but came back strong this year with bigger leaves than ever, and because the caudex is underground it could almost be grown like a perennial (try in zone 8b?). I have had some problems with yellowing on one of my three plants though.


On Jun 21, 2007, Cretaceous from El Sobrante, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:

Cycas debaoensis is native to China.

Cycadaceae are listed on CITES Appendix II.


On Feb 13, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

One of the coveted 'split leaf' Cycas species, this one from China. It basically has underground stems and long leaves, up to 12', shooting out of the ground. THe leaves are usually bipinnate and look similar to Cycas micholitzia, only much more profuse on the rachis. It is a highly ornamental cycad and my hopes are one day I will discover it CAN grow in my climate.. but not sure yet. Some populations are from relatively high altitudes and have a northern range that would approximate maybe what we have here in So California. Worth a try.