Cheesewood (Pittosporum undulatum)

Common Name Latin Name Plant Family
Cheesewood
Pittosporum undulatum
Pittosporaceae

Can be grown as a windbreak hedge in the mildest areas of the country, resisting maritime exposure[167].

Wood. Used in the manufacture of golf clubs[200].

  • Medicinal Use

    None known

  • Edible Use

    None known

  • Cautionary Notes

    This plant contains saponins[152, 154]. Saponins are found in many foods, such as some beans, and although they are fairly toxic to people they are poorly absorbed by the body and most pass straight through without any problem. They are also broken down if the food is thoroughly cooked for a long time. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish[K].

Cultivation & Habitat

Seed – sow when ripe in the autumn or in late winter in a warm greenhouse[78, 200]. The seed usually germinates freely. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle, move the plants to a cold frame as soon as they are established and plant out late in the following spring[78]. Consider giving them some protection from the cold during their first winter outdoors. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 – 7cm with a heel, July/August in a frame. Poor to fair percentage[78]. Basal ripewood cuttings late autumn in a cold frame[200].
Succeeds in most well-drained soils of reasonably good quality in full sun or light shade[1, 200]. Succeeds in dry soils. Tolerates maritime exposure[1]. This species is only hardy outdoors in the mildest areas of Britain[182], tolerating temperatures down to about -5¡c[260]. Very amenable to pruning, plants can be cut right back into old wood if required[200]. The species in this genus are very likely to hybridize with other members of the genus[200]. When growing a species from seed it is important to ensure that the seed either comes from a known wild source, or from isolated specimens in cultivation. The flowers are powerfully scented at night and are pollinated by night-flying moths[245]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[200].
Australia – New South Wales, Victoria.

Become ungovernable, break the chains of the matrix; grow and forage your own food and medicine.

*None of the information on this website qualifies as professional medical advice. Take only what resonates with your heart and use your own personal responsibility for what’s best for you. For more information [brackets] [000], see bibliography.