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Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake)

Intermediate
skill rating
3 hours care
per year
0.15m
Max height
0.3m
Max spread
2-5 years
To maturity
Low
Toxicity

Plant details

Botanical name

Mandragora officinarum

Other names

Common mandrake, Devil's apple, Devil's candle, Devil's food, Medicinal mandrake, Atropa mandragora

Genus

Mandragora Mandragora

Species

M. officinarum - M. officinarum is a rosette-forming, herbaceous perennial with ovate to lance-shaped, wavy-margined, dark green leaves and, in spring, clusters of upward-facing, tubular- to bell-shaped, sometimes purple or purple-flushed, greenish-white flowers followed by spherical, yellow fruit.


Mandragora officinarum is: Deciduous

Habit

Rosette

Toxicity

Highly toxic - all parts, particularly the roots and ripe fruit, are most likely fatal if ingested. Use extreme caution if planted where children frequent as the fruit is attractive and has a sweet taste.

Flower

Flushed purple, Greenish-white in Spring

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring

How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Slugs , Snails Slugs , Snails

General care

Pruning

Seed germination is slow and erratic and may take up to six months.

Propagation methods

Root cuttings, Seed


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Where to grow

Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake) will reach a height of 0.15m and a spread of 0.3m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Gravel, Rock, Beds and borders, Wallside and trellises, Woodland

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, well-drained soil in sun with shelter from cold, drying winds. Protect from excessive winter wet. Resents disturbance once established. Resents chalk.

Soil type

Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Well-drained, Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4), Tender in frost (H3)

Companion plants

We do not currently have companion plants added for this plant.

Botanical name

Mandragora officinarum

Other names

Common mandrake, Devil's apple, Devil's candle, Devil's food, Medicinal mandrake, Atropa mandragora

Genus

Mandragora Mandragora

Species

M. officinarum - M. officinarum is a rosette-forming, herbaceous perennial with ovate to lance-shaped, wavy-margined, dark green leaves and, in spring, clusters of upward-facing, tubular- to bell-shaped, sometimes purple or purple-flushed, greenish-white flowers followed by spherical, yellow fruit.

Foliage

Deciduous

Habit

Rosette

Toxicity

Highly toxic - all parts, particularly the roots and ripe fruit, are most likely fatal if ingested. Use extreme caution if planted where children frequent as the fruit is attractive and has a sweet taste.


Colour

Flower

Flushed purple, Greenish-white in Spring

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring


How to care

Watch out for

Specific pests

Slugs , Snails

General care

Pruning

Seed germination is slow and erratic and may take up to six months.

Propagation methods

Root cuttings, Seed


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake) will reach a height of 0.15m and a spread of 0.3m after 2-5 years.

Suggested uses

Gravel, Rock, Beds and borders, Wallside and trellises, Woodland

Cultivation

Grow in moderately fertile, well-drained soil in sun with shelter from cold, drying winds. Protect from excessive winter wet. Resents disturbance once established. Resents chalk.

Soil type

Loamy, Sandy

Soil drainage

Well-drained, Moist but well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

North, South, East, West

Exposure

Exposed, Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4), Tender in frost (H3)

USDA zones

Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6

Defra's Risk register #1

Plant name

Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake)

Common pest name

; Black wood of grapevine; Female sterility of tobacco; Fruit woodiness of tomato; Maize Redness; Mal azul of tomato; Metabolbur; Metastolbur; Parastolbur; Purple top of potato; Stolbur of potato; Stolbur of tobacco; Stolbur of tomato

Scientific pest name

Candidatus Phytoplasma solani

Type

Phytoplasma

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

Phytoplasma which potentially affects a wide host range; determined by the feeding behaviour of vectors. First UK outbreak in 2014; on strawberry; a host not specifically regulated in EU legislation. This legislation should be reviewed to take account of this and other developments.

Defra's Risk register #2

Plant name

Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake)

Common pest name

Scientific pest name

Xiphinema bakeri

Type

Nematode

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

2

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

Nematode pest; could potentially affect trees and other species if introduced but many pathways regulated. No evidence of interceptions or findings to date.

Defra's Risk register #3

Plant name

Mandragora officinarum (Common mandrake)

Common pest name

Lance nematode; Nematode; Lance

Scientific pest name

Hoplolaimus spp.

Type

Nematode

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

2

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

Nematode species potentially affecting a wide variety of crops; prohibition of soil likely to mitigate risk substantially; keep under review in light of interceptions or findings should they occur in the EU.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read "Don't risk it" advice here

Suspected outbreak? Click here for contact details to report to the relevant authority.

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Loamy, Sandy Tell us...
Soil drainage: Well-drained, Moist but well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: North, South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Exposed, Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Hardy (H4), Tender in frost (H3) Tell us...

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