Ceropegia stapelliiformis

This plant is native to the Cape Province (South Africa) and has been known since1827.

This is one of the first ceropegias that I collected. It's probably one of the easiest to grow. It has fleshy fibrous roots and it will propagate easily when the temperatures are warm. It took a while before I was able to bring it into bloom. The trick seems to be to take new cuttings each year and grow them on in new soil. The old stems will put out new growth that breaks off easily, sometimes the new shoots form roots before I break them off. It likes to bloom under high shade where it gets some morning and afternoon sun. It has never set seeds for me even though I see a lot of small flies on the open corolla lobes while the flowers are open. As you see in this picture, it can be a prolific bloomer.

The stapeliiformis in these pictures bloom at about two feet in length. The serpentina variety of stapelliiformis is a much shyer bloomer, I've had one plant for almost three years and have seen only one flower. It grew to quite a length before it bloomed, and it had a very elegantly colored flower, all green and white without any red in it. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to photograph it and haven't had another chance. Yet. . . (March 1998)

August 2006 - Last year we had a very dry summer and my stapelliformis plants were prolific with their flowers. It may be in part because I let the green flowered C. serpentina touch and root in the ground.

They were even visited by the small white-etailed gnats I had seen before. But no seed pods formed.

Here's a photo of the main plant and the serpentina vine.

And a shot showing the various stages of bud development and flower decay that takes about a week to 10 days for each flower.