Conophytum flavum N.E.Br.
Yellow Cone Plant
Conophytum flavum var. flavum
This species is native to South Africa. It occurs in gneiss, shale, or quartz ridges and patches of quartz rubble in Richtersveld and Bushmanland regions.
Conophytum flavum is a dwarf succulent with two opposite leaves fused into one inversely conical body with a truncate to slightly convex apex. It slowly grows to form dense clumps up to 12 inches (30 cm) in diameter. The bodies are smooth, shining, heavily spotted or without spots, and vary in color from whitish-green, bluish-green to grass green. They are up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) tall and 1.2 inches (3 cm) in diameter. The solitary flowers are diurnal, yellow, up to one inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, and appear within the center of the body in fall.
The specific epithet "flavum (FLA-vum)" is the neuter form of the Latin adjective "flavus," meaning "yellow, golden," and refers to the yellow flowers of the species.
How to Grow and Care for Conophytum flavum
Light: This succulent needs bright light but does not like too much direct sun. To avoid sunburn, place your C. flavum in a position to receive a few hours of full sun in cooler periods of the day. The plant stretch if it needs more light.
Soil: C. flavum thrives best in porous soil mixes that allow water to drain away quickly. Use a commercial potting mix specially designed for growing succulents or make your own.
Temperature: High temperatures are not a problem, but the plant can be damaged when the temperature goes below freezing. C. flavum can withstand temperatures as low as 35 °F (1.7 °C). USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 10b to 11b, 35 to 50 °F (1.7 to 10 °C).
Watering: When it goes dormant in the spring, C. flavum requires little or no water. In the fall, when it will begin growing, it is safe to water deeply, allowing the soil to dry before watering again. If leaves start to wrinkle during active growth, your plant needs water.
Fertilizing: This small succulent is a light feeder and does not need fertilizer if it is repotted every two years.
Repotting: The best time to repot C. flavum is at the beginning of the period of active growth, but repotting can be done at almost any time while the plant is actively growing.
Propagation: This species is usually grown from seeds. Like all Conophytums, it is also easily propagated by division. The best time to divide C. flavum is in late summer or early fall, before it begins to break dormancy or after it has flowered. Sow the seeds in fall in a pot with a well-drained soil mix.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Conophytum.
Toxicity of Conophytum flavum
C. flavum is non-toxic and safe to grow around children and pets.
- Back to genus Conophytum
- Succupedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
Click on a photo to see a larger version.