OSCULARIA

The plants in this genus are easy to grow and very free flowering. The growing period is spring and summer. They propagate easily from seed and from cuttings. They are shrubs with erect or spreading branches, of a pleasing blue-green or grey-green colour, and have attractive pink flowers in spring.

Oscularia caulescens. Forms a spreading bush. The leaves are f inch long, and have 2 to 3 small reddish teeth on the edges towards the tip. The flowers are scented and pink in colour.

Oscularia deltoides. There are several varieties of this species, all of which branch freely, forming dense plants.

PLEIOSPILOS. Comprising about 30 species, this genus is much sought after by collectors. In their shape and colouring the plants closely resemble pieces of granite. The growing period lasts from August to December, during which time moderate amounts of water should be given. During the remainder of the year the plants should be kept completely dry. They require a position in full light, and the compost should be very sandy. Propagation is easy from seed, many of the seedlings flowering in their first year. There are about 15 recognized species.

Pleiospilos Bolusii. A dark, grey-green plant, split into equal halves, sometimes growing to 4 inches in size. The surface is smooth, the chin-like portion usually rather warty. The flowers are golden-yellow, sometimes 3 inches across, and last for a few days.

Pleiospilos viagnipunctatus. The growths have 2 to 4 leaves which are very thick and taper abruptly; they are grey-green with numerous green dots. Flowers, yellow.

Pleiospilos Nelii. A plant very similar in appearance to P. Bolusii, but more smoothly rounded and more hemispherical in appearance. The fissure is deep. The flowers have bronzy petals, shading to white at the base, and dark-coloured anthers.

Pleiospilos simulants. Can easily be distinguished from P. Nelii by the much fatter leaves, which have practically no keels and are, as a rule, much greyer in colour, with more clearly marked dots. The flowers may be yellow, pale yellow, or even orange.

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