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Cheiridopsis namaquensis

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Scientific Name

Cheiridopsis namaquensis (Sond.) H.E.K.Hartmann

Synonyms

Cheiridopsis breachiae, Cheiridopsis cigarettifera, Cheiridopsis curta, Cheiridopsis difforme, Cheiridopsis difformis, Cheiridopsis duplessii, Cheiridopsis framesii, Cheiridopsis hutchinsonii, Cheiridopsis intrusa, Cheiridopsis latifolia, Cheiridopsis longipes, Cheiridopsis luckhoffii, Cheiridopsis marlothii, Cheiridopsis quaternifolia, Cheiridopsis scabra, Cheiridopsis serrulata, Cheiridopsis subalba, Cheiridopsis tenuifolia, Mesembryanthemum cigarettiferum, Mesembryanthemum difforme, Mesembryanthemum exiguum, Mesembryanthemum namaquense (basionym), Mesembryanthemum vescum

Scientific Classification

Family: Aizoaceae
Genus: Cheiridopsis

Description

Cheiridopsis namaquensis is a mat-forming succulent that grows up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall and spreads up to 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. The paired leaves are long, narrow, pale blue-grey to green-grey and finely spotted. Solitary flowers are golden to dark yellow and followed by multi-locular fruits.

Photo by Nick Helme

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Mesembs are mostly adapted to relatively predictable rainfall patterns rather than extreme drought and irregular rainfall. Total rainfall may be extremely low, but water is available at least seasonally or through fog and condensation. This leads to or allows plants which are not especially large and sometimes very small, and affects the way they need to be treated in cultivation.

The basics of care are very simple, with free-draining soil, plenty of sun and ventilation, and regular light watering in the right season. Yet the difficulties are endless, trying to adapt to the Mesembs' own adaptability and to follow their growth habits in your particular conditions.

These plants require a loam-based compost with the addition of extra drainage material such as horticultural grit or perlite. They all like good light conditions and plenty of ventilation.

Some are relatively cold-hardy and can even survive mild winters outside. Most will survive temperatures down to the freezing point. There are some Mesembs which begin to grow in the fall as the temperature drops and the days get shorter.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Mesembs.

Origin

Cheiridopsis namaquensis is native to South Africa.

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