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Mesembs | Images & Info | Conophytum | Breakdown| Cataphracta Group

this group was named for the "two-lobed" bodies found in most species.

  • Sandveld
  • Namaqualand
  • Richtersveld


map_BILOBA.gif (2642 bytes)

Species in BILOBA group: (Type: Conophytum bilobum (Marloth) N.E.Br.)

  • Conophytum bilobum ssp bilobum
  • Conophytum bilobum ssp altum
  • Conophytum bilobum ssp gracilistylum
  • Conophytum chauvinae
  • Conophytum frutescens
  • Conophytum meyeri
  • Conophytum velutinum ssp velutinum
  • Conophytum velutinum ssp polyandrum

The BILOBA group was named for the "two-lobed" bodies found in most of the species, these species are commonly referred to as the "Bilobes".  The BILOBA is the group with the least cone-shape and the most primitive plants of the genus.   The Biloba and Wettsteinia groups are closely linked, as can be seen in the most reduced forms of conophytum meyeri and conophytum bilobum.   Both groups have simple, showy flowers, yellow is the most common colour in the biloba group while purple is more dominant in the Wettsteinia group.  Both groups do have a flowers in the yellow-purple range.

Description of plants in the BILOBA group:

The plants are robust and divide quite freely, they are stemless (branches subterranean) or they branch aerially.  The firm bodies are inverted to cordiform to obovate or cylindrical.  The leaves are imperfectly fused and keeled apically when fused.  The keels are usually rubicund.  Epidermis is glabrous or papillate, never rugose or glossy (unless overwatering has occured), not window or window appears on a strip on either side of the fissure.  The epidermis is whitish-green to glaucos to greyish.  Fissure papillate.  The densely spotted thick sheaths are papery to leathery.

Description of flowers and capsules in the BILOBA group:

The scentless (rarely scented), early diurnal flowers have yellow petals, rarely another colour.  The style is longb and the stigmas are short.  The firm brown capsules are 4-7 locular, they are woody and aromatic when crushed.  The seedlings have an extended juvenile period (3-5 years), complete fusion for the first year and flowering may occur after three years only.  The cotyledons are obconical and truncate.

Reference:  S.A. Hammer, "The Genus Conophytum A Conograph", Succulent Plant Publications 1993.


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