Ruschia uncinata Schwantes
Mesembryanthemum uncinatum, Mesembryanthemum uncinellum, Ruschia uncinella
Ruschia uncinata is a mat-forming succulent that grows up to 1 foot (30 cm) tall and spreads several feet wide. It has interesting leafless, gray-green, rounded stems with small opposite pointed nodes that alternate 90 degrees from one set to the next. Flowers are pinkish-purple and have petals that radiate outwards along the edge but are erect in the middle of the flower, surrounding the reproductive parts. They are up to 0.8 inch (2 cm) in diameter and usually appear in spring.
USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Ruschias are popular for use in the garden. Their tolerance of drought makes them ideal water-wise plants in the arid and semi-arid parts of the world. Brilliant seasonal color displays can be achieved by mass planting in large areas and by using many different growth forms.
There are tufted, round-shaped plants, which are well suited for containers and flower boxes. The low-growing and spreading species cover well and will do wonders to terraces, embankments and will easily stabilize loose sand. Then there are the bigger, more robust types, which are best used among other larger plants or in combination with other succulents in rock gardens and mixed beds.
Remember that Ruschias are short-lived plants and it is, therefore, essential to continue replanting every 3 years. All species attract a host of insects and they are thus ideal subjects to attract wildlife to the garden throughout the year.
Once rooted or germinated, cuttings and seedlings can be fed with organic fertilizers to enhance vigor and health.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Ruschia.
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