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|Distribution:||Africa: South Africa: Western Cape:|
Haworthia lateganiae - Dr. Karl von Poellnitz.
Haworthia lateganiae is very similar to Haworthia starkiana and can be considered a longer-, more lanceolate-leaved form of the latter. The plants seems to be geographically well separated from each other, occuring some 15 km apart between the Schoemanspoort north of Oudtshoorn and mountains towards De Rust. There could easily be linking forms as it is difficult to search the area properly as the mountains are not always easily accessible and are fairly richly endowed with African bees that are often unfriendly towards mountaineers, especially in late summer. I myself have had some narrow escapes with these well organized, militant insects.
Both Haworthia lateganiae and Haworthia starkiana look like hybrids between Haworthia scabra and a larger parent that may perhaps resemble a yellowish Haworthia marginata-like plant (Haworthia smitii?) hitherto not found, and it is possible that this parent does not exist any more. This theory would explain why the similar Haworthia lateganiae and Haworthia starkiana exist some 15 km apart with many localities of 'pure' Haworthia scabra in-between.
Haworthia lateganiae could be considered a subspecies of Haworthia starkiana or both could be regarded as varieties of Haworthias scabra. (Varietal status would perhaps be better than subspecies here as Haworthia scabra does not grow very far from Haworthia starkiana). Both subspecies- and varietal status in the genus Haworthia are however likely to cause much confusion since the associations are often unclear. For that purpose I would think to leave Haworthia lateganiae a good species.
Haworthia scabra florishes in the area and is found on numerous mountain slopes. So far only near the localities of Haworthia starkiana do hybrids between Haworthia starkiana and Haworthia scabra occur.
Haworthia lateganiae (as Haworthia starkiana) is a robust grower that forms fairly large clumbs. I include pictures from Gerhard Marx from plants at Groot Kruis and the nearby Klein Kruis, an area between the Schoemanspoort and De Rust. The only two places where the plants are known to occur. At Groot Kruis the plants grow in shale on the northern slope of a mountain while at Klein Kruis the plants grow in a shale and quartz.
|Haworthia lateganiae in habitat at Groot Kruis.||Groot Kruis.||Groot Kruis.||Haworthia lateganiae in habitat at Klein Kruis.|
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