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Huernia schneideriana (Red Dragon Flower)

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Scientific Name

Huernia schneideriana A.Berger

Common Names

Red Dragon Flower, Red Dragon

Synonyms

Ceropegia 'Red Dragon Flower'

Scientific Classification

Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Asclepiadoideae
Tribe: Stapeliae
Genus: Huernia

Description

Huernia schneideriana is an attractive succulent plant up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall. The stems are erect, glaucous-green, 6 to 7 angled and strongly toothed. The flowers are up to 1.2 inch (3 cm) in diameter, brownish-red outside and velvety reddish-black inside with deep purple-black center.

Photo via flickr.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 10b to 11b: from 35 °F (+1.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Huernias require a potting mix with excellent drainage. A succulent plant mix of 50 percent pumice or perlite, 25 percent peat or organic mulch, and 25 percent sand helps prevent rotting and overwatering. Roots experience dieback in cool-season dormancy, so plants grow best in shallow containers that allow the soil to dry out quickly. Using clay pots further helps soil from staying too wet. An underlayment of coarse gravel below the soil mix also improves drainage. In climates with damp cool summers, a layer of gravel between the plant and the soil mix also helps prevent the stems from staying too moist.

Outdoor plantings do well in raised beds. Huernias prefer bright light or partial shade. In nature, they grow underneath shrubs or other plants. Too much sun causes stems to develop protective reddish or purple pigmentation and can actually scald the stems. Too little light leads to weak, thin growth with decreased flower production. Huernias grow best between 50 and 80 °F (10 and 27 °C). Protect them from freezing weather… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Huernia

Origin

It was once thought to be a natural hybrid of Huernia verekeri and Huernia aspera, but is now recognized by some authorities as a legitimate species native to Tanzania.

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