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Conophytum bilobum (Living Pebble)

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Scientific Name

Conophytum bilobum (Marloth) N. E. Br.

Common Names

Living Pebble

Synonyms

Mesembryanthemum bilobum (basionym), Conophytum elishae, Conophytum meyerae, Mesembryanthemum elishae

Scientific Classification

Family: Aizoaceae
Subfamily: Ruschioideae
Tribe: Ruschieae
Genus: Conophytum

Description

Conophytum bilobum is a small, stemless (or with a short stem with time) succulent, up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) tall, with paired leaves up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) wide. The surface is slightly harsh to the touch, chalky-green, and dotted with darker green. The leaf-tips are free in profile, triangular in shape, and keeled. The margins and tops of the lobes are green and often with a reddish or deep purple line. The flowers are diurnal, bright yellow to red-orange, up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, and appear in fall (rarely in summer).

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 10b to 11b: from 35 °F (+1.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Most Conophytums need bright light but do not like too much intense sunlight. To avoid sunburn, place them in a position to receive a few hours of full sun in cooler periods of the day.

These plants thrive best in a porous growing medium that will drain quickly. Use a commercial succulent soil specially designed for growing succulents or make your own mix.

When Conophytums go dormant in the spring, they require little or no water. In the fall, when plants will begin growing, it is safe to water deeply, allowing the soil to dry before watering again.

Conophytums are light feeders, and they do not need fertilizer at all unless they are repotted every two years. It is best to feed at the beginning of the growth period and just before flowering.

These succulents will benefit from repotting. They typically need to be repotted every 2 to 4 years, depending on the pot's size and growth rate. The best time to repot a Conophytum is at the beginning of a period of active growth.

Conophytums are easily propagated by division. They can also be grown from seeds.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Conophytum.

Origin

Conophytum bilobum is native to the western part of South Africa.

Subspecies

Links

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