My assumption that cultural requirements of Conos was akin to that of Lithops, proved to be a bit off, but after a little research (see links below), I was set straight. The seasonal phases of Conos are fascinating. They are winter growers. As summer approaches, growth slows and they prepare for domancy by developing a sheath, taking on a brownish, shriveled look. An unsuspecting gardener may think their plants were dying! With the onset of cooler temps of fall/winter, the sheaths break open to reveal new growth and brilliant color. This is also bloom time! Colorful little flowers pop up from the center of each plant. They last for a few days, staying open when temps are warm and the sky is bright. The cycle begins again as Conos fatten up and grow over winter, which is in perfect sync with the cool/rainy season in my area. We are buddies now!
Here are photos of a few of my Conos. I hope I labeled them correctly?!...
|Conophytum minimum 'wittebergense' Klipfontein'|
in late spring
|Same plant, in too much sun!|
|Fall ~ Sheaths breaking open. Notice some plants have begun to divide.|
|Conophytum marnierianum 'Secret of Suzanne'|