How to Grow Frankincense

Overview

Frankincense is a plant that contains a heavy fragrance most commonly used in as incense. The plant has a long historical and religious significance, especially within Christianity. The plant originates from the lower elevations of northern Somalia. The plant is a part of the Boswellia tree, as its scientific name is Boswellia sacra Flueck--part of the Burseraceae family of plants. The tree is tolerant of heat, but can die out from symptoms of frost. Once fully grown, that frankincense tree can grow up to 25 feet tall.

Step 1

Decide on an area to plant your frankincense tree where there are no weeds, and direct sunlight will be on the seed bed. Dig a hole that is at least 2 inches deep and 1 inch wide in the soil. Place a half-and-half mixture of limestone and sand in the soil.

Step 2

Spread your frankincense seeds over the sand and limestone. You can purchase your seeds at your local garden store or online, which may be sold as Boswellia seeds instead. Cover the seeds with a 1/4-inch layer of sand and limestone, and pack down the seed bed.

Step 3

Water the seed bed immediate with 1/2 cup of water. Continue watering the seed bed two to three times a day or whenever the soil is extremely dry. Wait until about 2-3 weeks for the seedling to sprout.

Step 4

Fertilize the around the seedling during the middle of fall. Use a 3-1-2 fertilizer and make sure to spread no more than 2 inches of the fertilizer around the seed bed. Fertilizing will also to help stop frost during the winter.

Step 5

Wait until the following spring when the tree should grow up to 6 inches tall. At this point you don't need to water anymore unless the soil is exceedingly dry around the tree. Watering more than what is provided through normal rainfall will hinder the growth of the roots.

Things You'll Need

  • Limestone
  • Sand
  • 3-1-2 fertilizer

References

  • Frankincense Tree
  • About the Frankincense Tree
Keywords: grow frankicense, boswellia, plant boswellia seeds

About this Author

Greg Lindberg is a graduate of Purdue University with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree in creative writing. His professional writing experience includes three years of technical writing for an agriculture IT department and a major pharmaceutical company, as well as four years as staff writer for a music and film webzine.