Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Haworthia marxii, Curb Your Enthusiasm!

Before I get to my overexcited Haworthia marxii, I have a bit of business to tend to. An Alert Gardener wrote to me about the propagation of monstrose cacti. She wanted to know how it was done. I have not tried to grow further Ming Things from my very own Ming Thing, but Dave of Dave's Garden has a wonderful, extensive article on crested and monstrose cacti (mutant growth forms). Most of these cacti are propagated by grafting. They are trickier to grow than the parent species, as the mutations that give them their odd growth seem to make them more delicate.


Now back to my Haworthia. Though only 4cm in diameter, it loves flowering season and gets very excited about putting on a proper autumn show for all of us:
An enthusiastically blooming Haworthia.
Just how long is that inflorescence?? An amazing 64cm! This species from the Western Cape generally grows a solitary inflorescence of 40-60cm, so this one is truly remarkable. Sadly, the flowers are odorless.


  1. Very nice Marla. Haworthia 'marxii' is a very rare haworthia and not a very easy one to grow well and flower. Right now all of my Haworthia truncata plants are in flower and I should be doing a bit of pollinating, but I've been busy with other things. I posted a pix of one of my H. truncata plants along with a pile of fruits and seeds on my blog back in May. http://bit.ly/1fBzq9U I've enjoy growing haworthias from seed but the seedlings are very slow. I don't have a plant of H. 'Marxii' but I might have to get me one. Nice looking pot too! :-)

  2. Hi, Bob!
    I found this little marxii dying at the back of a big box nursery; it was tiny and shriveled. It's doubled in size and seems very happy on a sand dune. I've never seen another for sale anywhere here. Most Haworthias I see are the Haworthia cooperi. I'd love to grow a truncata, I'm always on the lookout. And thanks for the compliment on the pot!

  3. Looks like haworthia tessellata

    1. Anon, it does look quite a bit like a tessellata, though it was labeled marxii. I don't fully trust the nursery labels; I've seen some blatant mislabelings, especially where giving a plant the label of a rarer species can increase the selling price! I would really need a botanist who's worked with both species (which look quite similar) to see it. I guess until then, we'll just have to call it an either/or!