Stapelia scitula 'Starfish Flower'

Clusters of upright, bright greens stems with serrated ridges comprise the majority of this unique plant – made all the more intriguing by its aptly-named blooms, which resemble a maroon starfish with fine hairs along the margin and a cluster of red and yellow stamens at the center. Reaching up to 3 inches tall at maturity, Stapelia scitula ‘Starfish Flower’ looks stunning as a single specimen, or as a high-contrast component within a potted succulent arrangement.

Native to the harsh landscapes of South Africa, ‘Starfish Flower’ has adapted to survival in the understory, leading to its preference for bright shade rather than full sun, which could predispose the plant to sunburn. Furthermore, it is more particular about its watering schedule than many succulents, requiring a regular routine during the active growing season, providing a thorough drink each time the soil has dried through, followed by a period of simulated drought during the cold winter months. A porous soil mixture within a well-draining pot is a must for this variety, as is ample airflow around the stems and soil surface.

Hardy only to Zone 10, ‘Starfish Flower’ is not cold hardy, and prefers never to be subjected to temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit whenever possible.