ISI 2006-31. Ruschia maxima (Haw.) Bolus

This mesemb bears the distinction of being the tallest ruschia – it grows to be a shrub to 1.5 m tall and up to 2 m across. However, it can be maintained as a smaller container or landscape specimen where its primary virtues can still be appreciated. Its sharp-keeled opposite leaves resemble cleaver blades lining the stems and are thin enough to be quite translucent when backlit. Up to an inch in diameter, the flowers are bright magenta with darker pinstripes on the petals. Rooted cuts of HBG 35175, a plant grown from seeds from Kirstenbosch BG, collected from N-facing rocks and scree of the Bobbejaansberg, W. Cape, S. Africa. $4.

Photo © 2006 by John N. Trager. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.

Published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal, Vol. 78 (2), March - April, 2006