Notices for Users of the Albums

1. New Albums and some changes


The latest genera Albums added to the Operation Wildflower Site are the ones on Romulea, Cotula and Lobostemon. This means that photos and stories of plants belonging to these genera already on the Site have been moved from the more general Albums called Bulbs, Herbs and Shrubs into their own new Albums under Genera. 


There is a genus Album in every case where enough material has been accumulated to warrant a stand-alone grouping of photos and stories. There are now more than 140 such Albums on genera of South African plants. The biggest ones (most photos) belong to the genera Crassula, Euphorbia, Pelargonium and Aloe. Keep watching, more will be added! If there is no genus Album yet on the plant you are looking for, check under Types or the Search Box.


In order to access all items on a plant of interest, the Search Box should be used, entering the botanical name of the plant. Most photos and stories on a particular plant are likely to be posted under Genera, (or if there are only few of them, in the conglomerate categories under Types). Habitat, Regions or Parks and Gardens may also contain some material on a species searched for, showing in the list generated when using the Search Box. The latest Parks and Gardens Album is the one on the Quiver Tree Forest.


2. How to use the Comments facility in the Albums


Any visitor to this Site can now register and log in as a registered user to comment on any Album item. The comment, question or suggestion regarding the selected item is submitted via email to the Editor.


New text or photo material on a South African plant can also be submitted for consideration by registered users. The final editing and posting of accepted material are done on this Site by the Editor only. The Site does not remunerate contributors for such input. Please ensure that the correct name of the photographer and/or author of text is furnished for inclusion with such a posting. All rights are reserved and the Editor’s decision is final.


Other enquiries or general communication regarding the Site can be submitted to the Webmaster.


A Selection of Album Categories

Xerophyta retinervis

Botanical Name

Xerophyta retinervis, formerly Vellozia retinervis

Other names

Bobbejaanstert (Afrikaans); Monkey's tail




Fibrous perennial usually around 0,6m, but can exceed double that height in favourable conditions

Description of stem

Dark grey to black tufted, usually branched, dark stumpy appearance a conspicuous feature

Description of leaves

Long light green,narrow, lanceolate leaves inclusters spread over the dark stem

Description of flowers

Attractive large mauve flowers appearing irregularly

Description of seed/fruit


Description of roots






Propagation and cultivation





Stems have been used as scrubbing brushes

Ecological rarity


Pests and diseases





Grassland, often in poor veld, surviving in harsh conditions, on rocky slopes

Distribution (SA provinces)

Limpopo, Gauteng and Mpumalanga


South Africa



Xerophyta retinervis; Photographed in the Rhenostspruit Nature Conservancy

Xerophyta retinervis photographed in the Rhenosterspruit Nature Conservancy










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