Cotyledon barbeyi Seeds
Family name: Crassulaceae
Common names: Plakkie (Afrikaans)
The genus Cotyledon comes from the Greek word "kotyle" which means cavity. Species name "barbeyi" was given after William Barbey (1842-1914), a Swiss philanthropist and botanist.
Cotyledon barbeyi is a robust, much branched, perennial, succulent herb that grows to a height of 1-2m. Its leaves are mostly basal, fleshy and vary from broadly ovate to lanceolate and even linear. Leaves can be smooth or covered with glandular hairs. This plant has pendulous red tubular flowers with a satiny sheen. The flower tube always bulges between the calyx lobes. This is the main character that distinguishes this plant from Cotyledon orbiculata. Flowering occurs between March and September.
It is naturally distributed in woodland and scrub in the Northern province and Mpumalanga in bushveld and rocky outcrops. It also extends beyond the low-lying regions of the former Transvaal into Natal and Swaziland. Cotyledon barbeyi is common in these areas and it has been found in some eastern parts of Africa to Ethiopia.