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Dyckia brevifolia (Sawblade)

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Scientific Name

Dyckia brevifolia Baker

Common Names

Sawblade, Pineapple Dyckia

Synonyms

Dyckia gemellaria, Dyckia princeps, Dyckia sulphurea

Scientific Classification

Family: Bromeliaceae
Subfamily: Pitcairnioideae
Genus: Dyckia

Description

Dyckia brevifolia is a small, clump-forming, terrestrial bromeliad with somewhat succulent leaves. The individual plants are up to 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. The leaves are green with small spines around the margins. The small spikes of beautiful, yellow flowers rise above the foliage.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Dyckias are not technically succulents, as they do not store water in their leaves like true succulents. They are xerographic and survive long periods without water by going dormant. Their rosette of thick, succulent leaves will eventually wilt, but recovery is rapid when watering is resumed.

Most of the plants survive in warm regions with heavy rainfall for half the year and very dry conditions the rest of the time. This makes Dyckia care slightly challenging, as getting the right balance of moisture to keep the plant happy may be difficult. The growing conditions in their natural setting should be mimicked as much as possible.

In their native region, it is not uncommon to find some forms growing on top of rocks near water. Water and the cycle of the monsoon season are important features to Dyckia health. They are used to rather poor soil when they do grow in ground and should be planted in a good succulent mixture.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Dyckia.

Origin

Dyckia brevifolia is endemic to Brazil.

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