Fat plants

Fenestraria aurantiaca


GeneralitŠ°


To the genus Fenestraria belong two species of succulent leaves, belonging to the group of Mesembryanthemum, coming from southern Africa.
The Aizoaceae family includes a hundred species of semi-classical, succulent, dwarf perennial plants. Very widespread, easy to grow and fast growing.

Leaves



Bushy plant with leaves up to two and a half centimeters long, club-shaped with a roundish section, erect and slightly curved inwards. The upper part of the leaves, slightly convex, is transparent, free of chlorophyll and allows the passage of light to the underlying tissues like a window, when it is in its spontaneous state it is almost buried under the sand. The leaves, towards the base, are reddish.
The flowers: they are orange-red and appear at the end of the summer on stems three to four centimeters long.

Exposure



The exposure must be bright and sunny, possibly in full sun because in its spontaneous state it lives in desert places.
Temperature: in summer the plants must be in the open air; in winter they must be kept in the apartment in rooms that are not too heated.

Watering



In winter the watering must be suspended, from the end of February to the late summer it needs modest watering.
Fertilization: during the vegetative period administer a liquid fertilizer diluted in the water of the watering.

Multiplication


It is sown in spring at a temperature of twenty degrees, then the seedlings are transplanted into containers with a diameter of 7-8 cm. In the summer it is possible the multiplication by cuttings: the leaves are detached, they are dried for two-three days and they are planted.

Topsoil


It is sufficient to place a layer of gravel around the heads of leaves. Containers should be filled with a part of universal soil and a part of fine gravel or coarse sand.

Fenestraria aurantiaca: Parasites and Diseases


The red spider mite causes the appearance of brown or pale spots on the leaves. If the atmosphere is too dry, the plant appears weak or withered: it is advisable to spray the leaves often. The lack of light can cause the absence of flowering, the weakening of the stems and the dull coloring of the leaves that fold sideways.