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  Conophytum pearsonii CACTUSPEDIA       

 


Conophytum  pearsonii
What a unique plant! The large flat or concave tops give it it an interesting appearance.
 

Description: C. pearsoni has been reclassified from being a stand alone species to a variety of C. minutum, it is one of the smallest or dwarf cushion forming succulent (but not so-minute as C. minutum is) that offsets readily forming small tightly packed clumps. It makes, geometrical clusters of plants bodies, a sphere formed of spheres.
Stem: It is stemless (branches subterranean) or branch aerially.
Bodies (leaves): It have tiny roundish, slightly elongated heads with large flat or concave tops 12 to 29 mm tall and the same in width, broadly conical with flattened crown. Shiny, smooth dark blue-green to grey-green covered with darker spots. The densely spotted thick sheaths are papery to leathery.
Flowers: Produces masses of glossy, pale violet to mauve blooms that emerge from a fissure about 3 mm long. They are simple, daisy-like, scentless, early diurnal, and about 20 mm across.
Blooming season:
They arise at the beginning of the growing period in September to October. Seedlings are capable of bearing flowers within 2 to 3 years.

CONOPHYTUMS: Plants of the genus Conophytum are also known as 'living pebbles'. During the rest period (the summer months in Europe) a new body forms inside the old, gradually taking all the substances from it until all that remains is the skin, which dries and protects the young plant from the heat of the sun and excess evaporation of water. The resting Conophytum protected by this dry cover resembles a pebble and hence the name 'living pebble'. The growth period of most species is from August to March. The temperature should be about 10 to 12C
 

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Family: Mesebrianthemaceae (Aizoaceae)

Conophytum pearsonii

Accepted Scientific name:
 Conophytum minutum
var. minutum (Haw.) N.E.Brown

Origin Northwestern South Africa, near Bakhuis

Habitat:  It forms odd, almost fake looking clumps on bare rock on Namaqualand quartzfield habitat. This species thrives in full sun.

Synonyms:

  • Mesembryanthemum minutum
  • Conophytum minutum (Haw.) N.E.Br.
  • Conophytum glabrum Tischer
  • Conophytum braunsii Tischer
  • Conophytum tubatum Tischer
  • Conophytum minutum (Haw.) N.E.Br. var. pearsonii (N.E.Br.) Boom
  • Conophytum pearsonii N.E.Br. var. latisectum L.Bolus
  • Conophytum pearsonii N.E.Br. var. minor N.E.Br.
  • Conophytum parvile
 



It is a fascinating minuscule plant with tiny daisy-like pink-magenta flowers in autumn.

Cultivation: Conophytums are very succulent caespitose plants which - next to Lithops - are among the most popular for their comparative ease of cultivation, particularly C. pearsonii is one of the easier and more reliable species to grow. They do well in full sunlight, partial shade, greenhouses, hotbeds or houses. These plants grow on winter rain and head for summer dormancy. They require little water; otherwise its epidermis breaks (resulting in unsightly scars).  Water minimally in summer, (only occasional misting when the plant starts shrivelling), but it will generally grow even in summer if given water.  Water regularly in winter after the previous year's leaves have dried up. Requires good drainage.  Keep cool and shaded in summer, it needs full sun or light shade. Hardy to -2C. Ensure a very good ventilation. Avoid to repot frequently. This plant may stay in the same pot for many years.

Propagation: It can be reproduced both by cuttings and seeds. The best method of propagation is by separating the clumps, take the cutting from a grown-up mother plant.  Each cutting must contain one or more heads along with a fraction of root.

 

Photo of conspecific taxa, varieties, forms and cultivars of to the Conophytum minutm complex (This Taxon has lots of synonyms ( like many other Conophytum) whit several controversial varieties and subspecies and comprises a multitude of different forms, but where each form is linked to others by populations of plants with intermediate characteristics):

 

 

 

Photo gallery: Alphabetical listing of Cactus and Succulent pictures published in this site.

Photo gallery CONOPHYTUM



 

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This old page has been moved! Click the link next on the right to enter the new Enciclopedia of Succulents. We hope you find this new site informative and useful.

Encyclopedia of Succulents