Ceraria pygmaea - 5 seeds
Ceraria pygmaea - 5 seeds
Ceraria pygmaea is a dwarf dioecious, glabrous, succulent plant with fat, tuberous, water-storing rootstocks up to 4 inches (10 cm) wide. Stem is erect, robust and woody at the base. Leaves are thick, jelly-bean-like, up to 0.6 inch (1.5 cm) long, up to 0.4 inch (1 cm) across, blue-green, later yellowish-green. The leaves fall off almost to the touch. However, new leaves will grow. Flowers are small, inconspicuous, pale pink, usually in terminal clusters of 2 to 6.
Cultivation and Propagation: Although regarded as a choice and difficult plant, in cultivation it is relatively easy but very slow growing and seems to want to grow all the year round in the greenhouse. It is a particular favourite of caudiciform plant enthusiasts. Growth rate: Plants grow very slowly and caudex take many years to enlarge. Clustering in cultivation, if grown correctly, it will reward the grower with generous displays of tiny flowers. Caudex exposure: The remarkable tuberous rootstock (caudex) is often raised above the soil line so that this can be seen and more readily appreciated. For best results the tuber must be exposed only when plans become mature enough, usually after several years (8-12 or more years) of underground growth, as the exposed caudex will no longer increase in size once it has been lifted above the soil line. Potting medium: Since roots are quite shallow, use a cactus mix or add extra perlite or pumice to regular soil potting soil. A gritty, very free-draining compost is suitable, and clay pots help the plants to dry out between watering. For best results, use a shallow pot, and only use the smallest diameter pot that will accommodate the plant. Fertilization: Need a perfect fertilizer diet in summer. Use preferably a cacti and succulents fertilizer with high potassium content including all micro nutrients and trace elements or slow release fertilizer. Watering Needs: Water normally in the growing season from March to October. No water should ever be allowed to stand around the roots. Keep almost completely dry in winter. The swollen caudex makes it very tolerant of under watering. Seedlings and rooted cuttings are more sensitive and cannot tolerate stagnant water around their roots (especially in winter) as this species comes from very dry areas. Hardiness: It is quite frost resistant if kept dry, hardy as low as -5° C. It can be grown outdoors in the summer months to benefit from direct exposure to light, and especially exposure to high summer temperatures. Recommended Temperature Zone: USDA 10-12. Sun Exposure: This plant has an excellent heat tolerance, and need full sun to light shade exposures. High levels of light are needed to flower and for good plant development.