Cycas Revoluta

Cycas Revoluta

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  1. Botanical Name: Cycas revoluta
  2. Synonyms: Cycas revoluta Thunb.
  3. Common Name: King sago palm, sago palm, Japanese sago palm
  4. Seeds collection period: Sep.-Nov.
  5. Seeds longevity: 1 year


  • This very symmetrical plant supports a crown of shiny, dark green leaves on a thick shaggy trunk that is typically about 20 cm  in diameter, sometimes wider.
  • The trunk is very low to subterranean in young plants, but lengthens above ground with age. It can grow into very old specimens with 6–7 m of trunk; however, the plant is very slow-growing and requires about 50–100 years to achieve this height.
  • Trunks can branch multiple times, thus producing multiple heads of leaves.


  • The pith contains edible starch, and is used for making sago. Before use, the starch must be carefully washed to leach out toxins contained in the pith.
  • Extracting edible starch from the sago cycad requires special care due to the poisonous nature of cycads.
  • Cycad sago is used for many of the same purposes as palm sago.
  • Sago is extracted from the sago cycad by cutting the pith from the stem, root and seeds of the cycads, grinding the pith to a coarse flour and then washing it carefully and repeatedly to leach out the natural toxins. The starchy residue is then dried and cooked, producing a starch similar to palm sago/sabudana.
  • The cycad seed contains cycasin toxin and should not be eaten as it is possible for cycasin toxin to survive the most vigorous of repeated washings.