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Senecio articulatus has fat cylindrical stems with periodic constrictions, giving an impression of sausage-links. These are decoratively enhanced by reddish-purple markings. The notched and dissected leaves are a bright green, sometimes flushed with purple.
These species are leafy succulents, in that they store large amounts of water in their leaves (as opposed to stems as do the cacti) and can withstand long periods of drought. Gooseberry leaves are football shaped and about 3/8 inch long. The unique shapes of the fleshy leaves greatly reduce the surface area exposed to the hot and dry environment, so they lose a bare minimum of the precious water extracted from the soil. The reduced surface area, however, limits the amount of the sun's energy the plants can absorb for photosynthesis. Nature's way of compensating for this limited external surface area is to have a 'window' or slit of transparent tissue in each leaf that allows light to enter and be absorbed by the photosynthetic cells lining the inside. Therefore, light absorption occurs on the outer surface as well as the inner surface. This allows the plant to produce a sufficient amount of food by photosynthesis while conserving its water. The central core of each leaf is composed of clear, non-pigmented water storage cells. See Senecio rowleyanus.
Curio rowleyanus (Senecio rowleyanus), also called String of pearls, is an excellent groundcover for dry rock gardens or for edging garden paths. It is a low-growing plant, and can cope with a variety of light exposures, from full sun to semi-shade. It has attractive white and off-white flowers that are highly fragrant, and its small succulent leaves are low maintenance and thrive in dry, sandy conditions. In the right environment, this plant can quickly spread and form a beautiful, green tangle that adds texture and scent to the landscape.
Plant is native to South Africa, and is hardy in USDA Zone 9-11. Plants in colder climates should be grown in pots and brought inside during the winter months. Potted plants require well-drained soil. Water the plant when the soil is dry to the touch, reducing watering even further during winter when the plant is resting.
Overall, Curio rowleyanus is a great choice for those looking for an aromatic, drought-tolerant groundcover for gardens or containers. With its colourful and fragrant flowers combined with its low-maintenance attributes, this plant is sure to add interest to any outdoor space.
The plant is a hybrid between Curio rowleyanus and Curio articulatus.
The plant does well in hanging baskets, where its leaves can shower downward. The plant thrives under bright, indirect light with some morning sun and in semi-shade under moist conditions.
Kleinia pendula has prostrate marbled succulent stems that arch over and touch the soil where they root, sending out more stems. The inflorescence is a showy red pom-pom of many tiny flowers.
Pericallis x hybrida (Florist's Cineraria) is a small shrub, typically growing to a height of 2-5 feet, native to the Canary Islands. Notable for its deep green foliage and stunning multi-hued blooms, this showy plant produces a bouquet of bright flowers in pink, purple, blue, and pastel shades. Many of the blooms also flouresce and some are bi-colored. The blooms measure 2 inches in diameter and appear in profusion from spring to early fall.
To cultivate a steady bloom of vibrant blooms, regular watering and a light application of fertilizer at the start of the growing season are necessary. Pericallis x hybrida can be grown in both gardens and planters, making it suitable for a variety of needs. For gardeners living in colder climates, it can be grown in containers that are brought indoors over the winter. When planting, cover the container with 1 to 2 inches of a moisture-retaining material such as bark or straw, and cut back the plants after flowering.
Although Pericallis x hybrida is ethno-medicinally beneficial, caution is advised when growing it as the plant can be considered invasive in some parts of the United States. Therefore, avoid allowing the plant to spread to natural areas. Seeds sown in early spring will take about 4 months to produce a colorful crop of blooms, with plants typically discarded after flowering is finished.
A great plant for beginners! Very fast growing, drought resistant, seldom bothered by pests and minimum care is rewarded with impressive floral displays! This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and birds. It is a fairly rampant, warm climate climber with thick evergreen leaves which deep green color provides a rich background for the brilliant flowers. It covers itself in brilliant bright orange daisy-like flowers about 1 inch in diameter, borne in small clusters. See Article about Mexican Flame Vine
Roldana petasitis, or Velvet Groundsel, is a small shrub native to Mexico that typically grows between 2 and 5 feet tall. It has large round leaves tinged in purple and are hairy to the touch. When in bloom, the shrub produces bunches of yellow and orange daisy looking flowers. The flowers will then produce seeds in profusion which will be wind borne and can make it invasive if not properly managed.
When caring for Roldana petasitis, it needs to be situated in full sun or semi-shade and receive regular water. It is recommended to prune it hard after it blooms to maintain its shape and size. It is grown in USDA Zone 9-11 and can survive in cold regions when planted in a pot. If grown in a pot, it should be positioned in full sun and watered regularly as to not let the soil dry out. It should also be fertilized on a monthly basis to ensure healthy growth.