Characteristics of the succulent plant Stapelia
Stapelia is a hybrid herbaceous succulent plant of unknown parents, although the morphology of the flowers closely resembles that present in Stapelia gigantea or Stapelia hirsuta; It can be assumed that one of these is one of his parents. It is a commercial hybrid of slow growth and slightly delicate to cultivate, but with awesome flowers.
Stems and leaves
The stems of this hybrid fail to exceed 18 cm in height, are fleshy and have four very conspicuous angles. In the margin of the angles, numerous little pronounced teeth are observed that end in reduced leaves of short duration. The growth of the stems is quite slow with very little production of ramifications, that is, to achieve a large plant we must wait more than 1 year. This slow growth indicates the need for its cultivation in pots where your water and nutritional status are better controlled. The color of the stems is light green, although under the influence of the sun they can turn reddish. The surface of all the stems is covered by a thin layer of translucent hairs that give it a smooth texture.
The flowers originate from small, low extra-axillary inflorescence that appear in the development of the new stems; only one stem inflorescence originates. The inflorescence can develop from 1-4 flowers that will have a staggered development. It is common in this hybrid that only 1 single flower of each inflorescence completes the total development and aborts the other buds.
Each flower is supported by a small pedicel of +/- 4 cm long and with a yellowish-green or reddish color. The fully open floral corolla can exceed 14 cm in diameter before the segments fold back. The typical star shape of the flowers of the genus with a poorly developed annulus is observed. In this hybrid the triangular segments of the corolla narrow rather in the second half; this narrow region may have less than 1 cm wide and exceed 8 cm long. The corolla regions closest to the center are much wider.
The color of the interior of the corolla is yellow with numerous reddish lines very similar to those present in Stapelia gigantea or Stapelia hirsuta, Los ends of the corolla segments are completely reddish. The surface of flowers and margins of the segments exhibit numerous reddish hairs of +/- 3 cm long that attract the pollinators.
The Ministerio has internal and external crowns with a reddish-brown color. In this hybrid the central pentagon that forms in the polonium is quite exposed, the internal crowns do not overlap in it.
All flowers have a foul odor that attracts numerous dipterans pollination The smell is not as intense as in other plants of the genus.
Tips for the cultivation of the succulent plant Stapelia
This hybrid is not one of the easiest to maintain in the garden because it is very susceptible to rot by excess water. Then, its essential care:
It is essential to provide a lot of lighting to this plant to slightly accelerate its growth. It is recommended to locate it fully exposed to the sun in the early hours of the morning and late in the afternoon. Avoid the intense sun of summer noon because it can burn your stems. Shaded cultivation will cause a violation of the stems and will increase the risk of rot; Besides, it won’t bloom.
It prefers to develop under the influence of high temperatures like all plants of the genus. The optimal range for this hybrid is between 22°-29 °C. Do not expose to temperatures below 6 °C.
It is essential to use a substrate with optimal drainage and low organic matter. If very organic substrates are used that retain a lot of moisture, it can rot very easily.
Water preferably when the stems begin to lose their turgidity reduce the risk of rot. We have proven that it is a hybrid that is quite resistant to dry seasons, but very susceptible to excess water.
Pests and diseases:
Mainly affected by mealybugs that attack stems, flowers, and roots. It can be attacked by mollusks and a wide diversity of pathogenic fungi if the ambient humidity is very high. In conditions of very low humidity, you can suffer attacks of red spider.
Simple from cuttings of stems that root easily, but grow slowly.