Saturday, September 15, 2007

Flowering Conophytum sp.

I have no previous experience growing Conophytum but last year I fell for a nice specimen of the genus and it’s now growing in my coldhouse. Conophytum is a typical winter-grower – in habitat it’s distributed in the arid winter rainfall areas from southern Namibia to the western part of South Africa. Consequently Conophytum must be treated fundamentally differently to cacti.

Flowering Conophytum sp. – close-up
Flowering Conophytum sp. – close-up

Conophytums must have a summer resting period, during which the existing leaves dry up to papery sheaths that protect next season’s budding leaves. Watering is resumed in late summer and new leaves develop rapidly, tearing apart the protective sheath formed by the old leaves. The plants should be watered quite heavily during the growth period; flowers are usually also produced during this period. When autumn sets in watering must be greatly reduced or completely stopped.

Flowering Conophytum sp.
Flowering Conophytum sp.

In spite of my lack of experience in growing plants from this genus, my Conophytum sp. rewarded me with two flowers a couple of days ago. I have no clue what species my plant is, but it seems to be standing the cold quite well (apparently frost-free conditions are recommended for Conophytums in general).

If anyone can decide the species based on the photos I would very much like to know. Also recommendations of other Conophytum species that can be grown under unheated glass (in freezing environments) would be greatly appreciated.

1 comment:

Guillermo Meyer Martínez said...

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Tu opinión es muy importante para mejorar cada día. Gracias por tu tiempo y saludos.