Description: It is among
the easiest species to grow and is available in several distinct
subspecies, variety and cultivated forms. It looks like a flowering
brain, with a big, umbrella-shaped daisy flower taking its nourishment
from the frontal lobes. It grows solitary or in small clumps of 1 to 10
paired leaves (mostly 2 to 5) up to 5 cm wide (often more in
Stem: Almost stemless.
Roots: It has soft rootstocks.
Bodies (paired leaves):
quite large 2-4 cm wide. Each plant consists of a pair of
extremely thick and equally or slightly unequally sized leaves fused
together and separated by a shallow fissure (2-5 mm) with conjuncted
lobes. The bodies are shaped like a truncate inverse, gray-green to
buff, cone, flattened to slightly convex in its upper portion.
The top of the leaves is elliptic to slightly reniform and varies
considerably in colour depending on the substrate of origin; the colours
comprises Yellow/brown, greyish/yellow, orange, rust, grey, grey/white,
dark coffee, with a fine lacework of greenish-brown spots, tracing and
furrows. Despite the variability in colour, the shape of this
species is relatively uniform and generally recognizable by its mainly
green windows or channels, and very irregular rust-brown islands with
numerous mini-windows and fairly narrow, distinct and irregular margins
Flowers: A single medium to very large yellow (or rarely white)
daisy-like flower emerges from the fissure and is as large as the pair
of fleshy leaves below. About 3-5 cm wide, diurnal.
Blooming season: From mid-summer through fall.
Seeds: light to dark brown, very fine.
subspecies, varieties and forms:
L. lesliei v. lesliei: Cole number(s):
C014, C020, C028, C036, C026, C151, C344, C352. Deep rusty
brown with brown windows; flowers golden yellow.
L. lesliei v. mariae:
Cole number(s):C141, C152. Gold specled with clear, orangish body with many very fine, pinspots
darker dots. Yellow flowers. Distribution: RSA: OFS, in a small area
within the range of var. lesliei, to the W of Boshoff and N and NE of
L. lesliei v. venteri: Cole number(s):C001,
C047, C153. Grey body with
grey black denticulate windows, like small worms. Yellow flowers.
Distribution: RSA: CP, in a fairly narrow strip on both sides of the
Harts River, extending NE from its confluence with the Vaal River near
Delportshoop to a point near Taung.
L. lesliei v. hornii: Cole number(s):C015,
C364. Light ochre to
rusty brown coloured body with greyish brown branching patterning.
Yellow flowers. Endemic to a small area SW and S of
L. lesliei v. minor: Cole number(s):
C006. Yellow-brown to
rusty brown, very similar to the typical form of var. lesliei, but
consistently smaller and with slightly different markings. Yellow
flowers. Distribution: RSA: Tvl, in a very small area to the SW of
Swartruggens, thus within the range of var. lesliei.
L. lesliei v. rubrobrumnea:
Cole number(s):C107, C204. Differs from the type variety mainly for the red
Distribution: RSA: Tvl, within the range of var. lesliei, in a very
small area W of Randfontein and Krugersdorp.
L. lesliei subsp.
C308. Distinguished from subsp. lesliei by
colour and markings, and from var. venteri by the much finer
meshlike markings and clavate marginal lines. Origin: RSA: CP, in
small area NE of Douglas. It is probable that this subspecies occurs
also in the military zone further to the NE, along the Vaal River.
L. lesliei "Albiflora" :
Cole number(s): C005A. Extremely rare white flowering form,
occasionally found in any one colony, , but in all other
respects the plants are indistinguishable from others in the same
colony. They can therefore be identified only when in flower.
L. lesliei "albinica":
Distinctly translucent, grass green to yellowish sheen with yellow
lines and patches. White flowers. Known only from one
L. lesliei cv. Storm's albinigold:
Cole number(s):C036B. Distinctly translucent, grass green to yellowish sheen with
yellow lines and patches with rich yellow flowers. It is
indistinguishable from acf 'Albinica'. It can therefore be
identified only when in flower.
L. lesliei v. minor cv.
Witblom: Cole number(s):C006A. White
flowering form. It is
indistinguishable from the standar v. minor. It can therefore be
identified only when in flower.