Echidnopsis Hooker fil.
From the Greek 'echidna', snake and '-opsis', looking like; for the often creeping stems. The Genus has a distribution from SW Oman, Yemen, Socotra and East Africa from Djibouti down to Tanzania and northern Kenya. The plants are stem succulents often branching, erect or creeping forming mats or clusters. In cultivation the plants require a minimum of 10°C in winter, and benefit from a little water periodically to prevent drying out of the roots and stems.
The plant shown is a Maria Dodds collection from the Shaba Game Reserve, just south of Archers Post, Kenya, the only country in which this species is found.
With decumbent stems to 5cm and 1 -1.5cm in diameter, this species is found in both Kenya and Somalia
With stout 16 ribbed stems this species from Somalia benefits from extra warmth especially in winter.
From Ethiopia and Sudan this species has greenish brown sturdy stems and a flower colour which ranges from yellow to reddish brown. Both extremes are pictured here. It is closely related to Echidnopsis nubica.
The two subspecies of Echidnopsis chrysantha are both endemic to Somalia. Both have erect or decumbent stems with underground runners and have the characteristic golden yellow flowers but ssp filipes has a longer pedicel up to 1cm and narrower corolla lobes.
From Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya this species has sturdy stems up to 2cm in diameter and characteristic somewhat flattened flowers. The plants pictured are from Nazręt, Ethiopia, and the Eil Pass in Somalia.
Found only in Kenya this species has characteristic jug shaped flowers borne on narrow stems which root along their length. The plant shown was grown from IAS1512 seed collected by Maria Dodds from Rumuruti.
A relatively recent discovery, being described in 2003, this plant from the Al Mahra province of southern Yemen appears, from the floral characteristics, to be closely related to E. specksii.
Found in Tanzania, this species has long creeping stems and pinkish yellow flowers. The plant pictured is from the Morogoro Province.
There is considerable difference of opinion regarding this species which was originally classified as the monotypic genus Pseudopectinaria malum. The fragile 5 to 6 ribbed stems form mats with numerous underground stems and produce the unique apple shaped flowers from which the species derives its name.
From northern Kenya, this species is closely related to E. scutellata and includes the former species E. scutellata ssp. australis . The plant shown is a Maria Dodds collection from just south of Marsabit, Northern Kenya.
This species from "Nubia" in SE Sudan and Ethiopia has erect or decumbent, branching stems and small brownish flowers. It is closely related to Echidnopsis cereiformis, and several authors feel that there is little justification for separating the two.
Recently discovered (2003) in the Mbaga Mountains, in the Kilosa District of Dodoma Province in Tanzania, the species has prostrate creeping stems.
From northern Tanzania and southern Kenya, Echidnopsis repens forms part of the Echidnopsis sharpei complex. The plant shown was grown from IAS1513 seed
As the name suggests found in Dhofar, Oman and like ssp. scutellata benefiting in cultivation from extra warmth in winter.
With six angled tubercles arranged in 8 ribs, this species found only in north Yemen has prostrate to erect stems
The plant pictured is from the Sidamo Province of Ethiopia and was previously known as Echidnopsis lavraniana, but this delicate species with creeping stems from Somalia and Ethiopia, has now been placed by Albers & Meve in Echidnopsis sharpei ssp ciliata. However this is not universally accepted and Plowes still maintains this as a separate species.
The creeping stems of this species found in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya can reach 15 cm in length.
This species was found by Ernst Specks in the Sidamo Province of Ethiopia, and described and named after him by Tom McCoy in 2003.
I obtained this species as E. dammanniana, but the flowers do not seem to quite fit the description being rather small and cup shaped.
The creeping stems of this species from Yemen with strange tubular flowers, form extensive mats as they tend to root along their entire length. The plant shown originated from Al Makhade.
From Kenya and northern Somalia the prostrate stems of this species quickly form large mats bearing the characteristic flowers. The plant shown was grown from seed IAS1225 from the Johannesburg Botanic Gardens, from a plant collected on limestone Hills in Margeisa, Somalia.
Named after the Dutch botanist Charles Focke 1802 - 56, this genus, in the subfamily Fockeeae, comprises six species all of which are found only in Southern Africa. All are perennial, slightly woody, geophytes with tubers, most of which have erect twining stems. The tubers are normally subterranean in nature, but in cultivation they are normally grown with their tubers at least partially exposed in order to avoid rotting.
This species of easy cultivation comes from the coastal regions of the Eastern and Western Cape Provinces and Swaziland. It is a vigorous twiner and is best trained around a hoop or up a framework.