Avonia quinaria subsp. alstonii (Schönland) G.D.Rowley
Anacampseros alstonii, Anacampseros quinaria subsp. alstonii, Avonia alstonii
This subspecies is native to South Africa (Namaqualand, Cape Province).
Avonia quinaria subsp. alstonii, also known as Anacampseros quinaria subsp. alstonii or Anacampseros alstonii, is a dwarf bizarre succulent with a flat-topped underground caudex and a crown of slender branches covered with tiny leaves hidden by triangular to broadly ovate scales darkening towards the tip. The caudex grows up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) in diameter with the crown above the ground. Branches are up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) long. The tiny leaves are flat, semi-orbicular, and arranged in five rows. Flowers are solitary, usually white or in shades of pink, and up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) in diameter. They appear at the tips of the branches in summer.
USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Although regarded as a choice and difficult plant, it is relatively easy to grow in cultivation. Avonias grow very slowly and require careful cultivation. However, if grown correctly, clustering in cultivation will reward the grower with great displays of tiny flowers. These plants grow well at moderate to cooler temperatures in partial sun. Bright light enhances leaf colors and makes for a compact plant. Depending on the species, they enjoy gritty, free-draining soil with added organic material and low to moderate watering.
The seeds germinate quickly at temperatures between 59 and 70 °F (15 and 21 °C). In cultivation, the young plants develop much quicker than in their natural surroundings, where they do not get an ample water supply. Generally, they are not easy to raise from seed as too much water kills them immediately, which also happens when they are not watered.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Avonia.
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