This is one of the Peruvian species that are noted for their highly succulent, windowed leaves. Here they are boat-shaped, silvery-frosted on the underside and with a translucent upper surface that allows light to penetrate to the green layer within where it is protected from water loss in the same manner as in the windowed leaves of various haworthias and mesembs. This species is particularly desirable for its delightful, tightly undulate-margined leaves, a feature referred to in botanical terminology as “crisped”. Curiously, the original description included a dozen fine electron micrographs illustrating details microscopic or barely visible to the naked eye, yet there were no illustrations of the living plant. Perhaps this is because Rauh only had a pickled specimen to work with when describing the species. Therefore, the full beauty of this species was not realized until photos of cultivated plants started to circulate. It is known only from the type locality: 22 km below Aricampa on the road to Marañon, La Libertad, Peru. Rooted cuts of HBG 109028. $10.
Photo © 2017 by Karen Zimmerman. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.