Gardening Magazine

Cubist Flowering

By Gardenamateur

"Hey, come outside and check this," said Pammy, "Cubey Guy is flowering."

Cubey guy?

"In the succulent patch... Cubey Guy... I don't know its name, but it's flowering," she replied to my quizzical look.

Indeed she was correct: Cubey Guy was flowering.

Cubist flowering

After never knowing its name for years, recently with the help
of Lithops aficionado Ngeun, I now know that this blooming

cubist person is Corpuscularia lehmannii. You can see where
Pammy got 'Cubey Guy' from, though. And with Corpuscularia
being one of the harder-to-remember, if not forgettable, names
in the already difficult world of succulent botanical names,
I fully suspect that Cubey Guy is Cubey Guy from now on.

Cubist flowering

There are only about five flowers on the whole plant and each
is small, just 1cm or so across, and shy, palest pink.

Cubist flowering

Growth has been slow but steady in its new home; in fact I had
to check an older photo taken last spring to confirm that, yes
indeed, Cubey Guy has grown a fair bit in fact.

Cubist flowering

Cubey's neighbor doesn't have a nickname but it is in bloom
now, too. This is Echeveria 'Topsy Turvey', a most unusual
member of the popular group of succulents which a lot of
readers would know as 'hen and chickens', the rosette-shaped
echeverias with the grey-blue foliage.

Cubist flowering

Topsy Turvey is a magnificent weirdo, the kind
of plant that you'd be likely to see on an alien
planet, or at least standing in as an extra in the
background on a Star Trek movie.

Cubist flowering

When it isn't sending up spectacular flower stalks in February,
'Topsy Turvey' is still quite a remarkable looking plant, as
this photo taken last December shows. You can kind-of, sort-of
see a bit of echeveria family resemblance there, but only just.

Cubist flowering

Nearby in the succulent patch, this plant isn't flowering yet, it's
just warming up before it bursts into bloom in autumn. This
is Sedum 'Autumn Joy', and if all goes according to plan this
could be covered in a vividly colourful mass of either red, pink
or pinky-brown blooms. I'm not sure what color it will be and
so until then Pammy and I will just have to live with the suspense.

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