Growing a plant for the first time, and growing it from seed, is always a kind of challenge. A quick look at the photographs you may find in the web leaves you with a first impression of what to expect. And it leaves you with the doubt how to verify the downright conflicting images. Photographs of plants growing in situ naturally show weathered plants. Growing plants under protection, different lighting and watering regimes, does change the appearance drastically. This is specially true for plants that go through some kind of winter or summer dormancy.
I sowed the winter-growing Antimima argentea end of october. After four weeks the first pair of true leaves showed their tips, and now, fifty days later, the second pair of leaves can already be seen. Also, a red-dyed stalk raises the first pair of leaves, while from the cotyledons a first sidebranch makes its way. Compared to many other Aizoaceae, this is a rather quick growth.
My seedlings are all growing in full winter sun, being protected only from strong dissecating winds and heavy rainfalls.
At this stage I decided to give them a pot for themselves. Not for space but to allow the watering and feeding they will enjoy from now on.
In mid February the plants look like this: still seedlings, but in all parts very green, lush and fragile. Not at all like the plants I expected.
Five months old, and already forming little mats.
Not an April’s fool joke over here – the first buds are forming now – the plants are merely half a year old.
The flowers a showy, but not big. 8th of may and the first two buds open – and lots more to come. It seems like Antimima argentea is a quick spreading little plant, easy to flower. At least under my conditions.
The seed pod looks like most of the family look, easily to identify as Mesembryanthemaceae, as it was formerly known.