Fenestraria

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Fenestraria
Fenestraria rhopalophylla.JPG
Fenestraria rhopalophylla
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Aizoaceae
Genus: Fenestraria
Species: F. rhopalophylla
Binomial name
Fenestraria rhopalophylla
Synonyms

Fenestraria aurantiaca

Fenestraria (known as babies' toes or window plant) is a (possibly monotypic) genus of succulent plants in the family Aizoaceae, native to the Namaqualand in Namibia.

Desccription[edit]

F. rhopalophylla in flower
F. rhopalophylla subsp. aurantica

The currently recognised species in this genus is Fenestraria rhopalophylla. Each leaf has a leaf window, a transparent window-like area, at its rounded tip, it is for these window-like structures that the genus is named (Latin: fenestra).

F. rhopalophylla appears very similar to Frithia pulchra, though the leaves are a slightly different shape and F. rhopalophylla has yellow flowers, compared to the pink flowers of F. pulchra.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

In the wild, the plant commonly grows under sand, except for the transparent tips, which allow light into the leaves for photosynthesis.

Fenestraria rhopalophylla is native to Namaqualand in southern Africa and to Namibia. The plants generally grow in sandy or calciferous soils under low < 100 mm rainfall.

Subspecies[edit]

  • F. rhopalophylla subsp. rhopalophylla with white flowers in autumn
  • F. rhopalophylla subsp. aurantiaca (=*F. aurantiaca) with yellow flowers

The status of Fenestraria aurantiaca is under review to determine whether its proper status is that of a full species or a subspecies of Fenestraria rhopalophylla.[1][2]


References[edit]

  1. ^ The Plant List (2010). Version 1. Published on the Internet; http://www.theplantlist.org/ (accessed June 2013)
  2. ^ Fenestraria - page on Succulent Guide