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Accepted Scientific Name: Faucaria felina subs. britteniae (L. Bolus) L.E.Groen
Bothalia 29(1): 41 (1999)
Origin and Habitat: Albany, Grahamstown and Fort Beaufort Districts, Eastern Cape, South Africa.
Altitude range: 350-700 mm rainfall per annum.
Habitat and ecology: Faucaria felina subs. britteniae grows in Valley Bushveld and drier grass veld, in loamy flats or on slopes among stones in open grassy spots or under small bushes with a preference for north-facing slopes. Rainfall 350-500(-700) mm per annum. Series, pH 6.7-7.7.
Faucaria felina Schwantes
Z. Sukkulentenk. ii. 177 (1926)
- Faucaria felina Schwantes
- Faucaria acutipetala L. Bolus
- Faucaria candida L. Bolus
- Faucaria cradockensis L. Bolus
- Faucaria crassisepala L. Bolus
- Faucaria duncanii L. Bolus
- Faucaria felina var. jamesii L. Bolus
- Faucaria jamesii L. Bolus ex Tischer
- Faucaria felina f. splendens H.Jacobsen & G.D.Rowley
- Faucaria kingiae L. Bolus
- Faucaria latipetala L. Bolus
- Faucaria laxipetala L. Bolus
- Faucaria longidens L. Bolus
- Faucaria longifolia L. Bolus
- Faucaria lupina (Haw.) Schwantes
- Mesembryanthemum lupinum Haw. in Till.
- Faucaria militaris Tischer
- Faucaria montana L. Bolus
- Faucaria multidens L. Bolus
- Faucaria multidens var. paardeportensis L. Bolus
- Faucaria plana L. Bolus
- Faucaria ryneveldiae L. Bolus
- Faucaria uniondalensis L. Bolus
Faucaria felina subs. britteniae (L. Bolus) L.E.Groen
Bothalia 29(1): 41 (1999)
- Faucaria felina subs. britteniae (L. Bolus) L.E.Groen
- Faucaria britteniae L. Bolus
- Faucaria coronata L. Bolus
- Faucaria grandis L. Bolus
- Faucaria smithii L. Bolus
- Faucaria speciosa L. Bolus
Faucaria felina subs. tuberculosa (Rolfe) L.E.Groen
Bothalia 29(1): 42 (1999)
- Faucaria felina subs. tuberculosa (Rolfe) L.E.Groen
- Faucaria felina subs. tuberculosa cv. Super Warty
ENGLISH: Bristle tiger jaw
AFRIKAANS (Afrikaans): tierbekvygie
Description: Faucaria felina subs. britteniae (Faucaria britteniae) is a compact succulent perennial rosette-succulent, usually stemless (but can builds short woody stems with age) clump-forming or shrubby becoming semi-globose with age. It has large yellow flowers 4-5 cm wide or wider, with purplish-pink undersides to the petals. Its ovate-triangular leaves up to about 5 cm long, have somewhat hollowed upper surfaces. Gray-green sprinkled with tiny dots of darker grey, they have white or reddish, horny bands along their edges and keels and margins with particularly prominent, long, recurved, hair-like teeth. Faucaria felina subsp. britteniae is unique in the genus because of the (partially) whitish grey epidermis. It is fairly popular amongst mesem collectors as it is free-flowering and grow relatively quickly.
Derivation of specific name: This member of the Euphorbiaceae family was given this name in honour of Lilian L. Britten (1886–1952), South African botanist at Rhodes University, RSA.
Stems: Up to 120 mm long.
Leaves: 30-55(-70) mm long, to 20-33 mm broad at the middle, tappering to 12-15 mm at the base. Fleshy, ovate-triangular to diamond-shaped, compressed at their apexes to form a strong chin. Keel sharp, forming a pronounced chin in almost rectangular arrangement as seen from the side. Margins and keel (partly) with a white or reddish band to 1 mm wide, with (3-)6-10(-13) teeth midway along each side, 3-5 mm broad at base 2.5-5 mm long, consisting of a broad, base and a long, sharp awn-shaped end with elevations and distant papillae. Epidermis with well-developed wax cover, thicker than in subsp. felina; uniform or partially whitish-green or greyish-green with numerous small greyish white dots, or dull green with white clearly visible dots.
Flowers: Large for genus 5-8 cm-wide, yellow, with purplish-pink undersides to the petals. Petals about 110-160. Stamens 260-350. Glands yellowish, green to brown.
Blooming season: Autumn to winter (in habitat March-August), occasionally throughout the year.
Fruits: Base very broadly bell-shaped, top with a high centre, 7-13 mm long, 9.5-13(-15) mm in diameter, 7-10 mm thick, easily falling off (tumble fruits).
Seeds: 1.4-1.6 mm long, 0.9-1.3 mm broad.
Taxonomic note. Faucaria felina subs. britteniae differs from Faucaria felina mainly in the basally broader and somewhat stouter leaves, in the keel meeting the upper leaf surface nearly at a right angle at the apex, and in the very numerous small dots, absent in F. felina.
Subspecies, varieties, forms and cultivars of plants belonging to the Faucaria felina group
- Faucaria candida L. Bolus: has large white flowers and leaves more or less uniform bright green without tubercles or pale speckling. Distribution: Cradock, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa.
- Faucaria cradockensis L. Bolus: ((syn: Faucaria felina subs. felina) has long unspotted leaves with white or pink teeth. Distribution: Hill above Cradock, Somerset East Dist., Eastern Cape.
- Faucaria felina Schwantes: has slender, spreading leaves with an oblique tip of the leaf. The lower number of teeth and the less spots separates it from Faucaria tigrina, which also has more erect leaves. Distribution: Eastern Cape-Province.
- Faucaria felina subs. britteniae (L. Bolus) L.E.Groen: has stouter whitish-grey green leaves, with darker-grey tiny dots, amd the keel meeting the upper leaf surface nearly at a right angle at the apex. Distribution: Albany, Grahamstown and Fort Beaufort, Eastern Cape.
- Faucaria felina subs. tuberculosa (Rolfe) L.E.Groen: Plant with large white tubercles or warts on upper leaf surface and soft white teeth along the edges. Cultivated plants shows a wide morphologic variability. Distribution: Bedford, Cape Province.
- Faucaria felina subs. tuberculosa cv. Super Warty: has large bumped and tangled tubercles or warts on upper leaf surface and soft white teeth along the edges. Origin: supposed from Japan.
- Faucaria longifolia L. Bolus: has long slender, more green leaves, keeled towards apex and with more numerous teeth. Distribution: Cape province.
- Faucaria lupina (Haw.) Schwantes: has silvery green, long, triangular leaves, with fierce-looking teeth along the upper margin. Distribution: Uitenhage, Eastern Cape Province.
- Faucaria speciosa L. Bolus: (syn: Faucaria felina subs. britteniae) has a more glaucous colour, and a rough leaf-surface. Distribution: Albany, Eastern Cape Province.
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Heidrun E. K. Hartmann “Aizoaceae F – Z” Springer, 2002
2) Thomas H. Everett “The New York Botanical Garden Illustrated Encyclopedia of Horticulture”, Volume 4, Courier Corporation, 1981
3) Ernst Van Jaarsveld, Ben-Erik Van Wyk, Gideon Smith “Succulents of South Africa: A Guide to the Regional Diversity” Tafelberg, 2000
4) James Cullen, Sabina G. Knees, H. Suzanne Cubey “The European Garden Flora Flowering Plants: A Manual for the Identification of Plants Cultivated in Europe, Both Out-of-Doors and Under Glass - Casuarinaceae to Aristolochiaceae” Cambridge University Press, 11/August/2011
5) Urs Eggli, Leonard E. Newton “Etymological Dictionary of Succulent Plant Names” Springer Science & Business Media, 29 June 2013
6) L.E. Groen and L.J.G. van Der Masen “Revision of the genus Faucaria (Ruschioideae: Aizoaceae) in South Africa” Bothalia 29.1: 35-58 (1999)
Cultivation and Propagation: Faucarias are the good choice for anyone wanting to start growing succulents. They are quite hardy and can take a short period of light frost and in very dry warm regions these succulents make very impressive out door ground covers. They need full sun to light shade with a well-drained soil mix, but can tolerate a wide variety of soil types and growing locations as long as there is plenty of sun. The plants are well watered during the growing season and allowed to dry thoroughly before watering again and will tolerate some over watering, but the challenge is to help them keep their compact form and prevent elongation of the stem. During the winter months, the plants should be kept very dry, only watering enough to keep the leaves from shrivelling.
As house plants they tend to grow in fair weather and rest when temperatures are too hot or too cool.
Propagation: Faucaria is very easy to start from seed. Seeds germinate in 7-14 days at 21°C. Although they will start from cuttings, it is quite difficult to get them to root. If they start to rot there is usually part of the plant that can be removed and possibly rooted.
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