Twin-Baobab, Heike Pander

The Baobab – surviving under tough conditions

Baobab – is a great source of inspiration and provider of a “super fruit”. The trees scientific name reads Adansonia digitata. They belong to the family of Malvaceae. Baobabs can be found in Africa south of the Sahara in dry and hot savannah areas, botanical gardens around the globe and increasingly on window sills in Europe. If a Baobab collapses and/or is uprooted it can still survive and drive new shoots out of its stem or branches.

Baobabs are real survivalists – they are frugal creatures living in areas with meagre soils and little rainfall. Their ability to regenerate themselves is legendary. They can balance out damage of their bark and branches to a very high extent. If a Baobab collapses and/or is uprooted it can still survive and drive new shoots out of its stem or branches. The fruit of Baobabs contain highly valuable ingredients. They are well known for their high percentage of vitamin C. Nowadays the fruit contents spread out in food and beauty markets worldwide – called “super fruits” or “superfoods”.

This blog grows into a colorful mix of stories, myths, photographs, paintings, information, facts, care tips and more. I love travelling to baobab locations and usually I am up to something “baobab”. No matter if I travel or speak to people anywhere – most have some interesting story or facts to share about the giant trees.

I would love to host posts of guests about baobabs on this blog. If you are interested and feel that you would like to contribute, please contact me at or HERE.

I hope you’ll enjoy browsing! Do you like my articles and contributions? I am looking forward to your recommendations and “likes” on your social platforms – thank you!

With best wishes
Heike Pander

PS: more information about me:

18 Replies to “The Baobab – surviving under tough conditions”

  1. Pingback: Baobab Pioneer in Southern Germany - Baobab

      • I followed your instructions but think I may have overwatered the seeds perhaps. I placed them on the soil with 2 cm of sand inside plastic wrapping They clearly began germination but never broke through the sand layer. Is there any way of measuring how much water they need?

        Many thanks for your time on this – Julien

        • Hi Julien, thanks for getting in touch. Well, I am not quite sure what you mean with plastic wrapping? Did you place the seeds in a pot AND in plastic wrapping? What I normally do: once the seeds have started germinating I place them on soil in a pot and cover the seedlings with a layer of 2 cm river sand. Then I water the plant and put it in a dry & warm place. After a while – sometimes hours if it is very hot outside – the seedlings break through the sand. Sometimes it takes a few days. To make sure that the seedlings do not get too much water I monitor closely and do not let the freshly germinated seedlings dry out completely. There is no bullet proof way of how to water – you have to make sure that the new plants do not dry out completely. Later on – once they have developed a tap root – I water only if the soil is completely dry. Hope that this helps… All the best, Heike

    • Hello Yakoye,
      as far as baobab cuttings are concerned, one has to have a lot of patience and it does not always work.
      Please find information here:
      The best is to use cuttings which still carry leaves, place them in a container with water and a little bit of sand covering the ground and wait. It may take months for the cuttings to sprout new roots.
      Good luck & all the best,

  2. Hi All,
    I seeded one a year ago. It reached to nearly 30cm high then the leaves started falling. From different sources I read, I should not put any water to her in her winter sleep. But how will I know when she will wake up again? I don’t want to dry her out.
    Please help.

    • Dear Volkan,
      thank you for your question. It is very difficult to “diagnose” from far away. Generally it is quite normal that baobabs drop their leaves from time to time – particularly when they get into their “winter” phase, meaning the dry season in many countries. In the wild they usually store enough water to survive that phase. Since your baobab seems to be in a pot and is still quite young it will need watering but with reduced frequency. I keep my baobabs indoors in moderate temperatures during winter. To make sure I do not overwater I poke my finger into the soil to check. If it is dry I give them some water (no flooding – they do not like standing water). After approximately 10-14 days or earlier – depending on the conditions you keep your baobab – I poke my finger into the soil again to check and if it is dry I pour some water. In “spring” depending on where you are – your baobab grows new leaves: green dots show at the branches where the leaves come out. Hope this helps you. All the best for you and your baobab. Best regards, Heike

      • Dear Heike,
        Thank you for your reply. It’s been two weeks since she dropped the leaves. Yes, she is so young to survive as I thought. That’s why I worried. I gave a little water now as soon as I read your reply.
        With best!

  3. Hello,
    I have a home in Costa Rica and would like to try a baobab. Where is a trustworthy source to purchase seeds?
    Thank You

    • Hi Rusty, you could try to find a source via – you should get some hits if you look for “baobab seeds”. Another trustworthy source in Germany is – they sell baobab growth kits on their site. I hope this information helps you. Best regards, Heike

  4. Pingback: A természet titkos fegyverei - A baobab olaj - ANITATOTH Organic Products

  5. Hi Heike!
    I just purchased some baobab seeds and have started to plant mine. I live in California, in the USA. I’m planning to grow them in a very large container, maybe a 50-100 gallon container. Do you know if this is big enough for them to germinate fruits? I really hope to try some baobab fruits.
    Thanks, Alan

    • Hi Alan, thank you for getting in touch re Baobab & congratulations to your decision to grow baobabs from seeds! California sounds as if the baobabs will like it with respect to temperatures. I do not know the gallon system. My recommendation is that you plant each baobab in a separate container as they need space – to grow up but also for their roots. I doubt that they will grow fruit – but as I said I do not know how much 50 – 100 gallons are… Usually, baobabs flower for the first time when they are between 10 – 20 years old – but that really depends on where they grow, soil conditions and whether they have enough space or not. Good luck with your project & all the best! Heike

  6. Dear Heike,

    Thank you for this wonderful site with so much interesting reading, full of information and amazing photographs of baobabs… it’s all love.
    I would like to ask you for a piece of advice, I have a baobab growing in a pot and two of its branches have become very long. I would like to shorten them so that it can focus on other branches, or maybe have new branches growing in other directions. How would you do this in best way?
    I’d be happy to send you a picture, I just did not find anywhere to attach a file. Thank you in advance.

    • Hi Rob, thank you for your kind words of appreciation. I’ll send a separate mail to you. Just as a first response: take pruning shears and shorten the branches at the length you’d prefer to have them. The baobab will push out new branches next to the cut – or wherever it wants to do so… You do not have to wait for a specific time – although I prefer to cut branches on my baobabs once they lost their leaves in fall. All the best & kind regards, Heike

  7. Pingback: A természet titkos fegyverei – A baobab olaj – ANITATOTH Organic Products

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