Although striking in appearance, the flowers of this unusual plant smell unpleasantly of rotting meat to attract pollinating flies.
The upright stems are thick and fleshy.
They tend to sprawl as the plant ages, and the leaves are then reduced to spinelike protuberances.
In summer, flowers may be produced either singly or in small groups at the base of the stems.
The star-shaped flowers are pale yellow with purplish brown blotches and are up to 3in/8cm wide. Stapelia variegata
Asclepiadaceae Carrion Flower Fact File
ORIGIN South Africa.
HEIGHT To 8in/20cm.
POTTING MIX Soil-based with some added coarse sand.
REPOTTING Move into a pot one size larger in spring or whenever the stems appear crowded.
PROPAGATION Sow seed or take stem cuttings in spring and summer. Allow the base of the cuttings to dry before inserting them into a sandy medium.
KEEPING PLANTS Warm, dry air is essential.
Asclepiadaceae Carrion Flower Plant Care
- Direct sunlight.
- A minimum of 55°F/13°C in winter.
- Water from below to moisten the soil thoroughly, then let the top half of the soil dry out before watering again.
- Apply a high- potash liquid fertilizer every 4 weeks in the growing season only.