Cissus hamaderohensis is a strange looking perennial plant native to Yemen and Socotra. The flattened slate green stems are 4-6 inches long, constricted at the nodes, with a base that becomes very woody with age. Flattened stems climb by tendrils that emerge from the nodes. Leaves, when present, are spatulate to 1 inch (2.5 cm) long by about 0.5 inches (1.2 cm) wide. Our plant, at 8 years old, is about 6 feet (~2 m) tall with a spread of about 2 foot (60 cm). We found this plant at one of the local retailers that was going out of business and because of it strange appearance, I had to have it. Many thanks go to Leslie Goertzen at Auburn, who finally after many years of trying to identify it, put me on the right track to the ID. It is a very easy plant to grow and should be considered a must for succulent collections.
Blooming: In the greenhouse, in mid winter our plant blooms. The very small flowers, 3 mm (1/8 inch) across, are greenish yellow and occur in umbels of 6-14 flowers. Not particularly showy.
Culture: Cissus hamaderohensis needs a well-drained soil mix and full sun to light shade. In the greenhouse, we use a soil mix consisting of 1 part loam to 2 parts sand with small gravel added to ensure good drainage. Plants are well watered and allowed to dry thoroughly before watering again. We fertilize only once a year with a balanced fertilizer and this is done in the early fall. During the winter blooming period, plants are watered a little bit more than in the summer, but care should be taken not to water them too much or root rot may occur. Winter temperatures should never drop below 65°F (18°C).
Propagation: Cissus hamaderohensis is best propagated from cuttings in the spring.
Cissus hamaderohensis was featured as Plant of the Week December 9-15, 2005.
Guide to Past Plants-of-the-Week:
Cal's Plant of the Week was provided as a service by the University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology & Plant Biology and specifically the late Cal Lemke, who used to be OU's botany greenhouse grower and an avid gardener at home as well. If the above links don't work, then try the overview site. You may also like to look at the thumbnail index. ©1998-2012 All rights reserved.