The dikbasmalva (thick bark pelargonium) or Pelargonium crithmifolium is capable of reaching considerable size, thanks to the storage capacity in its caudex. Dry and trying days are common in this arid land.
The specific adaptations for coping here range from a conspicuous caudex or succulent leaves, less noticed when the surviving part is seasonally hiding in a bulb below ground or even as a seed until the next rain.
Visibility from a distance is enhanced by colour or size. The annual herb bearing a bright flower does all of that quickly in one season. The stem succulent Pelargonium adds reserves for painstaking growth over years for performances in the big league; that is in local Namaqua terms where trees are rare and shrubs may dominate (Le Roux, et al, 2005).