Tylecodon reticulatus subsp. reticulatus (part 1 of 2)

This variable plant has thick stems to 40 cm tall and to 10 cm thick with brown peeling bark and leaves  5-40 mm long and 3-10 mm wide, with or without glandular hairs.
The inflorescences are twiggy and much- branched, with peduncles 3-10 cm long. After flowering the inflorescence becomes woody and forms a kind of wire-mesh cover on top of the plant.
In October-December the small urn shaped flowers appear;  they are 6-8 mm long and yellow-green to brown.
The plants occur from Southern Namibia to the Little Karoo in the South and to Beaufort West and Willowmore in the East on stony slopes and loamy and clayey flats.

Jan Vlok in his book “Plants of the Klein Karoo”,  supplies the following delightful snippet of information:
“The calyxes of the flowers harden and flatten out, becoming little stars that run up and down the old flower stalks. These moving stars simulate the movement of aggressive ants, ‘protecting’ the plants against predation by other fauna”

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