Monday, August 10, 2009

Pigface, Baby toes & Living stones

Lampranthus aureus, "Pigface" or Orange Ice-plant

Fenestrartia aurantiaca "Baby toes"

Lithops salicola, Living Stones

A collection of Lithops or "Living Stones"

All these plants are members of the Aizoaceae family and produce large crystalline daisy type flowers which are notable for their size compared to the parent plant and for their quantity of flowers. Most are native to the dry regions of South Africa.
A garden I drive past everyday has two large square beds in their front lawn with the Orange Pigface making a fluro colour statement at the moment. "Pigface" are called "Ice- Plants" in California and are popular coastal plants which put on a bright show of red, yellow , pink, mauve, purple or orange flowers in late winter and early spring.
They make good ground-covers in hot dry garden sites and require little maintenance other than shearing off the dead flower heads in late spring. The only problems I have encountered in growing them come from scale insects and root mealy bug. This is a problem in mainly potted specimens which may become stressed when I forget to water them. A friend of mine collects the "Living Stones" and "Baby toes"and they make unusual pot plants and are a real talking point.
2017 update: I don't grow these for sale.

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