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Orbea decaisneana


Scientific Name

Orbea decaisneana (Lem.) Bruyns

Common Names

Carrion Plant


Caralluma decaisneana, Angolluma decaisneana, Boucerosia decaisneana, Desmidorchis decaisneana, Pachycymbium decaisneanum, Stapelia decaisneana

Scientific Classification

Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Asclepiadoideae
Tribe: Ceropegieae
Subtribe: Stapeliinae
Genus: Orbea


Orbea decaisneana is a slender much-branched perennial succulent up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall, forming diffuse mats up to 20 inches (50 cm) in diameter. Stems are slender, cylindrical, slightly angled with a conical protuberance, erect to decumbent, whitish-green to grey-green, marbled or spotted with brown to purple, 3- to 6-ribbed, up to 16 inches (40 cm) long and up to 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) in diameter. The star-shaped flowers are up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter and dark purple or reddish-brown in color.

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How to Grow and Care

Several species are fairly easy to grow. Others, often those with slightly hairy stems and the more unusual flowers, are more challenging and require careful watering (with some fertilizer) during the growing season and complete withdrawal of water during the winter months. A minimum winter temperature of 10°C (50°F) is acceptable, providing that plants are kept absolutely dry. A heated growing bench or incubator may help delicate plants to get through the colder months. However, many species live under shrubs in habitat and prefer light shade rather than full sun.

A gritty compost is essential, and clay pots are advisable for the more delicate species. Some growers prefer a mineral-only compost to minimize the chance of a fungal attack on the roots. A layer of grit on the surface of the compost prevents moisture from accumulating around the base of the stems.

Keeping Stapelias and their roots free of pests such as mealybugs is the real key to success as fungal attack often occurs as a result of damage to stems by insects… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Stapelia


Native to Senegal, Mali, Morocco, Burkina Faso, and Sudan.



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