Oscularia

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Oscularia
IMG 5943-Oscularia deltoides.jpg
The toothed leaves of Oscularia deltoides
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Core eudicots
Order: Caryophyllales
Family: Aizoaceae
Genus: Oscularia
Schwantes
Species

about 25 species, see text

Oscularia is a genus of succulent flowering plants in the family Aizoaceae, native to semi-arid and rocky habitats in the Western Cape of South Africa.

It was previously included within the related genus Lampranthus, but was split off as a separate genus, due to differences in its fruit and flower.

Description[edit]

The club-shaped leaves of Oscularia caulescens

The most superficially recognisable feature of the genus is the strange shape of the leaves, which are grey-green and waxy. They are triangular in cross-section (3 angled) and can be sickle, club or mouth shaped. The name "Oscularia" actually means "group of tiny mouths" in Latin, and refers to the appearance of the toothed leaves in some species. The stems are often red, and the leaves can become red too during times of drought.

Abundant, almond-scented, daisy-like white or pink flowers appear throughout the summer.[1][2]

Distribution[edit]

The species of this genus are restricted to the Western Cape Province, South Africa, where they occur only in winter rainfall areas. Their habitat is typically rocky areas of sandstone.[3]

The species O. deltoides is common in cultivation.

List of species[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ RHS A-Z encyclopedia of garden plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. 2008. p. 1136. ISBN 1405332964. 
  2. ^ http://gateway.myspecies.info/oscularia
  3. ^ http://www.plantzafrica.com/plantnop/osculdelt.htm
  4. ^ http://www.ipni.org/index.html