Conophytum cubicum Pavelka
This species is native to South Africa. It was discovered by Petr Pavelka at the end of the 20th century. It is only known to occur on one quartzitic hill northeast of Eksteenfontein in Northern Cape.
Conophytum cubicum is a spectacular dwarf succulent that forms a small clump of more or less cubic bodies with a concave upper surface. The bodies are pairs of leaves joined to their tips with only a small opening through which the flower stalk appears in mid-summer or early fall. They grow up tp 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) tall and 0.4 inches (1 cm) thick, tapering slightly toward their base. The epidermis is smooth, pale bluish-green to pale brownish, often red-spotted to red-crossed on the upper surface. The diurnal flowers are white with a brownish-orange, up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long tube. They are possibly the largest flowers in the genus.
USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °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 mix specially designed for growing succulents, or make your own.
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 do not need fertilizer at all if 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 the growing season.
Conophytums are easily propagated by division. They can also be grown from seeds.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Conophytum.
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