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Glottiphyllum surrectum


Scientific Name

Glottiphyllum surrectum (Haw.) L.Bolus


Mesembryanthemum surrectum (basionym), Glottiphyllum arrectum, Glottiphyllum concavum, Glottiphyllum parvifolium, Glottiphyllum rubrostigma, Mesembryanthemum arrectum, Mesembryanthemum subrectum

Scientific Classification

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


Glottiphyllum surrectum is a small, mat-forming succulent with short stems and slender, erect leaves. The rosettes are up to 3.2 inches (8 cm) in diameter, with three pairs of leaves arranged cross-wise. The leaves are bright green, turning dark green, or even a deep red (almost black for some plants), in full sun. They have slightly pointed tips. The flowers are yellow and appear in the fall.

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USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Mesembs are mostly adapted to relatively predictable rainfall patterns rather than extreme drought and irregular rainfall. Total rainfall may be extremely low, but water is available at least seasonally or through fog and condensation. This leads to or allows plants which are not especially large and sometimes very small, and affects the way they need to be treated in cultivation.

The basics of care are very simple, with free-draining soil, plenty of sun and ventilation, and regular light watering in the right season. Yet the difficulties are endless, trying to adapt to the Mesembs' own adaptability and to follow their growth habits in your particular conditions.

These plants require a loam-based compost with the addition of extra drainage material such as horticultural grit or perlite. They all like good light conditions and plenty of ventilation.

Some are relatively cold-hardy and can even survive mild winters outside. Most will survive temperatures down to the freezing point. There are some Mesembs which begin to grow in the fall as the temperature drops and the days get shorter.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Mesembs.


Glottiphyllum surrectum is native to the arid areas of Little Karoo, South Africa.


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