Rhombophyllum

Rhombophyllum rhomboitleum is one of a group of plants in which the growing period follows the flowering period. The species forms a mat of prostrate rosettes with eight to ten thick very succulent leaves varying between 1 and 2 in (2-5 to 5 cm) in length and just under an inch (2-5 cm) in thickness. As its name suggests the leaves are rhom-boidal in shape with the upper surface carrying a shallow groove down the centre and the lower surface having a pronounced keel near the tip. Most varieties have plain white-rimmed edges but these also occasionally carry a few teeth. The whole plant is covered with numerous whitish dots and the flowers are produced between June and September, often three or more on the same stalk. They are a magnificent golden-yellow colour, about in (4cm) in diameter with a reddish outside.

As mentioned earlier growth continues after flowering has finished and the species will appreciate a warm sunny position and continued watering right through until November when the resting period starts again. During the winter resting period, which should last until growth is started up again in June. R. rhomboideum requires an open well-lit position but does not need the high temperatures that some of the other species require, being quite content with a minimum temperature of 7°C (45"F). Propagation is best carried out by seed which germinates readily but some of the offsets may also be removed and rooted as cuttings.

Rhombopliylluin nelii is not to be confused with Pleiospilos nelii although they both cany the same specific epithet in honour of

Professor G. C. Nel who was director of the Botanical Institute in Stellenbosch. It has distinctly two-lobed leaves which are joined on the back surface to form a united leaf going down to the base. The leaves are bluish green and have some rather inconspicuous darker dots completely covering them. The flowers are much larger than the preceding species, nearly 2 in (5 cm) in diameter and bright yellow.

Lampranllius aureus appears vaguely similar to R. nelii when young but the difference quickly becomes apparent as it starts to grow and form its characteristic

; clearly v n the

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