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Horse teeth

Haworthia truncata

Truncate Haworthia, Perdetande (Afr.)

Haworthia truncata is a miniature leaf succulent with flattened ends and shallow roots. The top surface gives the impression of having been cut or truncated, hence the name truncata. The leaves are covered in white or grey lines with varicosities. In nature the plants are often half-buried, with only the tips of the leaves visible above the soil. The truncated tip is translucent, allowing light to enter for photosynthesis. In this respect, the species resembles Lithops, Fenestraria, and Haworthia cymbiformis. This species produces small, white, tubular flowers on slim, upright stems.

Planning

Difficulty
Moderate
Flowering time
Spring
Fruiting time
Spring

Harvesting

Generally not harvested.

Propagation

Seed
Sow seeds during the cool, early summer months in a light, sandy, loam mixture in seed trays, 4 mm below the soil surface, cover with thin layer of coarse sand, mist on alternate days, place in sun.
Cuttings
In autumn tear a turgid, healthy leaf from the mother plant, with a heel (stem from the motherplant) take care not to damage the main body of the plant when removing a leaf. Place on a coarse sand mixture, rooting takes a few months.
Division
Plants will also grow from the roots if divided.
Notes
Can be easily propagated from leaves, simply remove cleanly from the mother plant, let callus for a few days until the wound has closed and place on soil or in water and wait for roots to develop. Roots usually grow first to seek out water, followed by new leaves. This may take anywhere from a week to a few months and there is no need to water propagating succulents as they will glean all the nutrition and moisture they require from their mother leaf, which will shrivel up over time. The original leaf may be gently removed once it has dried up and become crispy in texture, only remove if it comes away easily otherwise you risk damaging the baby plant.

Special features

Drought resistant
The root system is fleshy and shallow-rooted so the plant can absorb every drop of moisture when it rains, thus this species can go long periods without water.

Geography

Origin
Africa, South Africa, Little Karoo, Oudsthoorn, De Rust and Calitzdorp areas
Natural climate
Semi-Arid succulent Karoo and thicket in the Western Cape

Environment

Light
Full Sun
Soil moisture
Dry
Soil type
Loam, Sand
Soil PH preference
Alkaline, Neutral
Frost hardiness
Half-Hardy

Personality

Family
Asphodelaceae
Flower colour
White
Scent
None

Problems

Generally trouble free. As with all succulents, over-watering is the commonest route to plant death, so err on the side of too dry rather than too wet.

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