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Dinteranthus microspermus subsp. puberulus (Stone Plant)

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Scientific Name

Dinteranthus microspermus subsp. puberulus (N.E.Br.) N.Sauer

Common Names

Stone Plant, Living Stone

Synonyms

Dinteranthus puberulus, Dinteranthus punctatus, Dinteranthus microspermus var. acutipetalus

Scientific Classification

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

Description

Dinteranthus microspermus subsp. puberulus is a small, stemless, usually solitary or few branched succulent up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) tall. It has only pairs of boat-shaped leaves up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long, broad and reddish-grey-green to grey-violet in color. Epidermis of the leaves is velvety and green dotted. Flowers are many-petaled, arranged solitary, yellow or whitish, often tipped with reddish. Fruit is a capsule with 6 to 10 locules and broadly winged valves.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Adult plants of this genus behave like Lithops, summer expansion leading to flowering in fall, followed by a slow transfer of resources in winter. The main difference is that the presence of 2 active leaf-pairs is not unusual in some Dinteranthus.

Dinteranthus require slightly less water than do most Lithops. Excellent drainage is essential. Their nutritive requirements are amazingly modest and the root systems of even the healthiest plants are minuscule. What they need most critically is good light, which will give them a bone-white aspect. Older long-stemmed plants can and usually should be turned into cuttings and re-rooted.

Sow in high summer. Use sterilized soil with extra grit and enough peat to ensure high acidity. Place the sown pot in a water bath, cover the whole assemblage with clear plastic and place it outdoors in a bright spot. Wait 3 full days, remove the pots to your usual place of germination and mist them at least twice a day. Seedlings should be evident within 12 days of sowing.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Dinteranthus.

Origin

Dinteranthus microspermus subsp. puberulus is native to South Africa (Northern Cape).

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