Succulent Gardening: The Art of Nature

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Aeonium tabulaeforme crested

Aeonium tabulaeforme is a Canary Island Aeonium that grows nearly flattened to the ground in a round whorl of many lime green ciliate leaves (edged in soft hairs). In habitat, these plants look like flying saucers scattered all around the terrain. Can grow to nearly 20" in diameter. Thiis is a cristate form that produces fan-shaped growth, rather than the "flying saucers". Rather than the leaves growing from one central apical meristem (growing tip), the apical meristem has "gone crazy", growing laterally in a fan shape and leaves are produced all along this fan-shape. Cristate forms generally occur when injury occurs to the plant at a young age (this damage can be due to insects eating the growing tip, or from many other causes, including a genetic predisposition). In reaction to the "injury", the cells at the tip of the branch where growth occurs begin to multiply at a much faster rate and the normal growing tip "goes crazy", creating fantastic whorls and fans. Porous soil with adequate drainage. Filtered light and ample airflow. Water thoroughly when soil is dry to the touch. As Aeoniums are summer dormant it is preferable to provide cool shade during dormancy. Protect from frost.

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