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  Pelargonium alternans
(Syn: Pelargonium microphyllum)
CACTUS ART
NURSERY

Cultivation and Mail Sale
of Cacti and Succulents.


Suited for bonsai culture.
 

Description: Succulent or sub-succulent multi-trunked shrublet with a definite  summer dormancy. Suited for bonsai culture.
Stem: Very compact, grey-green, glaucous or brown, woody twisted branching and microscopically pubescent.. The stems will grow up to three centimetres in diameter The whole plant can reach 40-50 centimetres in height, with a 50-60 cm crown of foliage.
Bark: brown, smooth.
Leaves: Small pinnately compound, divided (dissected), hirsute with glandular hairs interspersed at the ends of the stems.  Lamina oblong, 20-60x10-20 mm, pinnae with rounded apices, stipules triangular, 1x1-1.5 mm, initially persistent, finaly deciduous. Scented, with the scent varying from clone to clone, varying from apple to soap to various indescribable and unpleasant odors.
The oils that give the scent keep most grazing animals from eating the leaves. Mostly leafless in fall when flowers show up
 


Flower:
Night scented. White pink with 5 red anthers, and usually produced in clusters of up to four on an unbranched flowering branch. The inflorescence has smaller foliar leaves, bears pseudoumbels and is non persistent.  Peduncle 1.8-5 mm. Sepals 5, lanceolate, 1.5-2x7 mm, reflexed. Hypanthium 5-9 mm.
 

Cultivation: Water from early February to late April, then from early August to late November, at a minimum temperature of +14 C.  Keep completely dry in summer and winter, at a mininimum temperature of +8 C.  Protect from frost. Pelargonium alternans in cultivation is usually so overwatered and overfertilized that it is hardly recognizable as the species that it is.  Correctly grown, this is a beautiful, compact and dense plant.  It does best with a mix that has almost no organic material at all. Perlite can be substituted for pumice, but it tends to rise to the surface of the mixture.
Heat Tolerance: Light shade or morning sun in summer. Sun Exposure: Light shade


 


Reproduction:
There are two main ways to propagate members of the genus Pelargonium.  Plant seeds any time of the year, but a spring or autumn sowing of seeds is usually most successful.  Rooting cuttings of stems is another method.  Germination can be very erratic, and can take place over a long period of time.  There is a way of overcoming the long time periods and the inhibitors; that is, by scarifying the seeds.


 

Photo gallery: Alphabetical listing of Cactus and Succulent pictures published in this site.

Photo gallery PELARGONIUM


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Family: Geraniaceae
 

Scientific name:  Pelargonium alternans Wendl.
Hort. Herrenh. 1, t. 10 (1798/88?) 14.

Origin:  It comes from the southern part of South Africa (western and southern parts of south-western Cape Province)

Habitat: Grows in dry areas in well-drained soil, with some water and some sun. Very drought tolerant.

Conservation status: Listed in CITES appendix 2.
 

Synonyms:
  • Pelargonium alternatim-pinnatum Wendl. ex Steud.
  • Pelargonium coralinum (Eckl. & Zeyh.) Steud.
  • Pelargonium microphyllum (Eckl. & Zeyh.) Steud.


 

 



Fruit and a winged seed.

Home | E-mail | Plant files | Mail Sale Catalogue | Links | Information | Search

All the information and photos in cactus art files are now available also in the new the Encyclopaedia of Succulents. We hope you find this new site informative and useful.