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Accepted Scientific Name: Anacampseros lanceolata (Haw.) Sweet
Hort. Brit. [Sweet] 170 1826 Sweet
Origin and Habitat: Anacampseros lanceolata is native of the Northern Cape (Little Karoo and Namaqualand), Republic of South Africa.
Altitude: 150 - 1250 metres above sea level.
- Anacampseros lanceolata (Haw.) Sweet
Anacampseros lanceolata (Haw.) Sweet
Hort. Brit. [Sweet] 170 1826
- Anacampseros lanceolata (Haw.) Sweet
- Anacampseros affinis H.Pearson & Stephens
- Anacampseros lanceolata var. albiflora Poelln.
ENGLISH: Spear-leaved Anacampseros
AFRIKAANS (Afrikaans): Boesmansuring, Haaskos
RUSSIAN (Русский): Анакампсерос копьевидный
Description: Anacampseros lanceolata (spear- leaved Anacampseros) is a branching leaf succulent that forms low clumps or mats with fat lanceolate leaves occuring in distinctive basal rosettes. White filamentous hairs are present along the stems adding a nice contrast to the dark foliage. It will also form a caudex with time. The whole plant up to fifteen centimetres high. The flowers are rose-purple.
Stems: Up to 8 cm long, but usually shorter, richly branched, thick, that can grow to five centimetres in diameter
Leaves: Numerous, fleshy, up to 2.5 cm long, narrowly lanceolate, short tipped, glabrous, green to deep green often tipped red with the upper side flat and extremely vaulted beneath. Axillary hairs (thread-like stipules) very long whitish, shiny, and curly.
Inflorescence: Scape leafy generally 1 to 4 flowered .
Flowers: Bell-shaped rose-purple with pale magenta petals up to 3 cm in diameter.. They are mildly fragrant and quite showy.
Blooming season: The plants bloom in late spring. The flowers open in late afternoon.
Seeds: Almost 3 winged
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) George Don “A General History of the Dichleamydeous Plants ... Arranged According to the Natural System” Volume 3 J. G. and F. Rivington, 1834
2) B.Y.W. Sonder “Flora Capensis” Vol 2, page 381 1894
3) Werner Rauh “The Wonderful World of Succulents: Cultivation and Description of Selected Succulent Plants Other Than Cacti” Smithsonian Institution Press, 1984
4) Doreen Court “Succulent Flora of Southern Africa” CRC Press, 01/giu/2000
5) Stuart Max Walters “The European Garden Flora: Dicotyledons” (Part I) Cambridge University Press, 1989
6) Burgoyne, P.M. & Potter, L. 2005. Anacampseros lanceolata (Haw.) Sweet subsp. lanceolata. “National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants” version 2013.1. Accessed on 2014/05/24
7) Graf, Alfred Byrd. “Tropica : color cyclopedia of exotic plants and trees for warm-region horticulture in cool climate the summer garden or sheltered indoors” East Rutherford, N.J. : Roehrs Co., 1981.
8) Gordon D. Rowley “The illustrated encyclopedia of succulents” Crown Publishers, 01/Aug/1978
Cultivation and Propagation: Anacampseros lanceolata is one of the more common species in cultivation and quite resistant to cultivation. The only things that can kill this plant are cold and overwatering. Nevertheless, it is appropriate to provide adequate growing conditions in order to obtain compact plant with many flowers.
Growth rate: Slow growing to start but does well under cultivation. They need to be moderately large (about 20 cm in diameter) before they flower.
Soils: Use a an open and free draining mineral compost with little organic matter (peat, humus) that allows therefore roots to breath (as it is rot prone). Outdoors a well-draining rocky or sandy soil is ideal.
Repotting: Repot once a year in order to evaluate the health of the plant and provide a larger growing space being careful not to damage the sensitive roots.
Watering: It likes a winter's rest and should be kept completely dry during the winter months. From early spring onwards the plant will begin to grow and watering should be increased gradually until late spring when the plant should be in full growth. Water regularly during the aestival growth cycle so long as the plant pot is allowed to drain and not sit in a tray of water (this plant need plenty of water) But needs to be avoided wetting the bodies of these plants while they are in sunlight. A wet plant in the sun light can cause sun burning which can lead to scares or even fungal infections and death. From late summer watering should be reduced to force the plant to go in to a state of semi dormancy, by autumn you should be back in to the winter watering regime. Keep dry with ample airflow in winter (but for outdoors cultivation it is somewhat resistant to wet conditions, too if grown in very draining substrata). In the rest period no high atmospheric humidity!! Care must be taken with watering as they tends to become swollen and untidy in growth habit if given too much water and shade.
Fertilization: Feed with a high potassium fertilizer in summer during the growing season diluted to one-fourth potency and mix into the watering can for application.
Hardiness: Keep dry at 5- 10° C in winter, but can tolerate sporadic light frost if kept on the dry side prior to, and during, cold weather. Pots may be placed outdoors during the summer months, but must be moved indoors during the winter. USDA zones 9-11
Exposition: The plant tolerates bright situations, if kept too dark they may become overly lush and greener and could be prone to rotting due to over watering. Strong but filtered light encourages flowering, but is likely to suffer from sun scorch or stunted growth if over exposed to direct sunlight during the hottest part of the day in summer. .
Uses: It is an excellent plant for container growing. It always looks good and stays small. It look fine in a cold greenhouse and frame. It do well outdoors in raised beds, rock gardens and terraces as well. The slowly creeping stems cluster freely to form mats as a small area ground cover. Anacampseros lanceolata also makes an excellent potted windowsill plant.
Pests & diseases: It may be attractive to a variety of insects, but plants in good condition should be nearly pest-free, particularly if they are grown in a mineral potting-mix, with good exposure and ventilation. Nonetheless, watch carefully for any significant decline in health. This may signal a pest problem that should be dealt with quickly in order to prevent scarring, stunting and even death.
- Red spiders: Red spiders may be effectively rubbed up by watering or misting the plants from above.
- Mealy bugs: Mealy bugs occasionally develop aerial into the new growth among the leaves with disfiguring results, but the worst types develop underground on the roots and are invisible except by their effects. Eliminate mealybug infestations by dabbing the critters with cotton swabs dipped in alcohol or by soaking the succulent roots in a systemic insecticide.
- Scales: Scales are rarely a problem.
- Rot: This species is particularly easy and accommodating, seldom suffer of cryptogamic diseases. Rot it is only a minor problem with cacti if the plants are watered and “aired” correctly. If they are not, fungicides won't help all that much.
Propagation: It is easy to propagate either through stem cuttings or seed. Seed germinate in 14-21 days at 21°C. Sow in a well drained medium.
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