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Astroloba spiralis

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Scientific Name

Astroloba spiralis (L.) Uitewaal

Synonyms

Aloe spiralis (basionym), Aloe cylindracea, Aloe imbricata, Aloe pentagona var. spiralis, Aloe spirella, Apicra imbricata, Apicra pentagona var. spirella, Apicra spiralis, Apicra spirella, Astroloba pentagona, Haworthia gweneana, Haworthia imbricata, Haworthia pentagona var. spiralis, Haworthia pentagona var. spirella, Haworthia spiralis, Haworthia spirella

Scientific Classification

Family: Asphodelaceae
Subfamily: Asphodeloideae
Genus: Astroloba

Description

Astroloba spiralis is a compact Astroloba species, with upright, erect stems that are densely covered in pointed succulent leaves. Stems are up to 6 inches (15 cm) in diameter and up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall. The leaves are blue-green to grey in color, they grow in 5 rows that sometimes form a gentle spiral. The leaves also have smooth surfaces. Each leaf typically has an oblique keel near the point. The flowers are white, wrinkled and appear in autumn.

Astroloba spiralis

Photo via haworthia-gasteria.blogspot.com

How to Grow and Care

Astroloba plants are increasingly popular as succulent ornamental, due to the extraordinary beauty of their leaf structure. Some have intricate patterns of lines, margins, spots and raised tubercles on their leaves. Nearly all of them display a crystal-like regularity in their leaf arrangement. This is not always apparent in wild plants, which are usually disfigured by their harsh habitat.

In cultivation, Astrolobas are at their best when provided with some protection from full sun. In a semi-shade environment, with extremely well-drained soil and gentle conditions, Astrolobas can become remarkably beautiful and ornate.

Unfortunately, when conditions are not ideal, occasional random leaves can die, shrivel up and go brown, all along its stem. This is unfortunate because, as explained, much of the beauty of the plants comes from the intricate, crystalline pattern of their leaves. However this disfigurement can be avoided by keeping the plants in optimal, fertile conditions – growing steadily and sheltered from stress… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Astroloba

Origin

It is endemic to the southern Karoo regions of the Western and Eastern Cape Provinces, South Africa.

Links

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