Orbea semota subsp. orientalis Bruyns
Accepted Scientific Name
Orbea semota (N.E. Br.) L.C. Leach
Orbea orientalis, Ceropegia semota subsp. orientalis
Orbea semota subsp. orientalis is a much-branched succulent with fleshy, erect or decumbent stems with conical tubercles arranged into four rows along the stem. It is distinguished from the type form by its smaller, dark maroon or brown flowers. The stems can grow up to 4 inches (10 cm) long and 0.7 inches (1.8 cm) thick (excluding teeth).
The flowers appear solitary or in a group of several from any part of the stem from summer to fall. They are star-shaped and reach up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter.
USDA hardiness zone 11a to 11b: from 40 °F (+4.4 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
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 water withdrawal during the winter months. A minimum winter temperature of 10°C (50°F) is acceptable, providing that plants are kept dry. A heated growing bench or incubator may help delicate plants to get through the colder months. However, many species live under shrubs in their 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 mineral-only compost to minimize the chance of a fungal attack on the roots. A layer of grit on the compost surface prevents moisture from accumulating around the base of stems.
Keeping Stapelias and their roots free of pests such as mealybugs is the real key to success, as fungal attacks often result from damage to stems by insects.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Stapelia.
- Back to genus Orbea
- Succupedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
Click on a photo to see a larger version.