The Cactus and Succulent Plant Mall
The Cactus and Succulent Plant Mall

CSSA VOL.76, July-AUGUST 2004 No.4
Falling in love with every cactus. A journey in the Atacama DesertDenis Diagre
Succulent roofsRay Stephenson
Pediocactus and Sclerocactus From seed to graft and back againRene Zahra
Rich succulent floras in central Baja CaliforniaMark A Dimmitt, John F Wiens & Thomas R Van Devender
The Complete Encyclopedia of Cacti. Book review and rant on repetitive, redundant and regrettable cactus booksD Russell Wagner
In Defense of DactylopsisMatthew R Opel
Pilosocereus fulvilanatus. An easy blue columnar for your collectionBob Ressler
An unusual new species of Drosanthemum from Rooinek Pass in South Africa's Western CapeErnst Van Jaarsveld
Pachyforms: A guide to growing pachycaul and caudiciform plantsDan Mahr
Agave parrasanaBrain Kemble
Euphorbia santapauii A pilgrimageRam Gandhi
Succulents on Stamps - PachyformsPeg Spaete
Superb SucculentsDuke Benadom

On the cover. The Knersvlakte is a small portion of Namaqualand somewhat inland of the western coast of South Africa. It is renowned for its quartz fields-plains of white quartzitic pebbles which blanket the surface of the earth like hail after a Midwestern thunderstorm. Within these fields grows a great diversity of dwarf flowering stones, especially leaf succulents of the Crassula and Mesemb families. The mesemb genera Argyroderma, Oophytum, and Dactylopsis are endemic to this area, growing exclusively on quartz. These miniatures often occur in such dense concentrations that they lend a green cast to the hillsides, growing shoulder to shoulder in carpet-like mats. As with many extremely arid regions, the Knersvlakte experiences great variability in rainfall, although the average is quite low. During the South African winter of 2001, unusually heavy rainfall saturated the ground and plumped the plants to the bursting point. Rob Skillin shot the cover photo of Dactylopsis digitata in August of that year, when the plants were so turgid with water that the leaf tips of many were popping off from the internal pressure.

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