‘Split Rock Succulent’
One succulent with a difference is Pleiospilos nelii, also known as the ‘Split Rock Succulent’ and is one of the Memsebs.
It is a native of South Africa, and its natural environment is in desert areas, so sun loving and very little water. This makes it an ideal house plant, as long as it gets adequate sun.
Pleiospilos nelii will flower, orange and yellow flowers will shoot from the centre of the plant, often more than one.
The flowers open and close with the light, and if they are pollinated they will be followed by seed pods. In nature, pollination is by insects, if grown indoors, hand pollination will be needed.
The foliage or body of the plant will vary in colour with both green and red forms being available.
A free draining growing medium is essential.
Watering is the key to growing this plant, you can usually get away with watering 3 – 4 times a year in spring and again in autumn.
Watering should be by a deep watering, and at least 4 weeks apart.
Between waterings, the soil needs to dry completely. One deep watering in water in winter and very little in summer.
Watch the foliage, new leaves, a pair of them, should start appearing in winter. The old leaves should die as these provide the energy and moisture for the new pair. If the old leaves do not die back by summer, chances are you are overwatering, and this will kill the plant.
- Botanical Name – Pleiospilos nelii
- Common Name – ‘Split Rock Succulent’, Kwaggavy
- Family – Aizoaceae
- Origin – South Africa
- Position – Full sun.
- Soil – Very well drained.
- Height – To around 10 cm
- Spread – To around 10 cm
- Growth rate – Slow
- Flowers – Orange to Yellow
- Flowering Time – Spring
- Foliage – Marbled or spotted green.
- Frost tolerant – Medium
- Drought tolerant – Yes
Mesembryanthemaceae, or Memsebs are a group of succulent plants. They range from small low growing plants to bushy shrubs.
Carpobrotus including Carpobrotus edulis, Lampranthus and Drosanthemum species are more widely used in landscaping.