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Succulent plant

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**1. Succulent Plant Characteristics:**
– Succulent plants have thickened stems, leaves, or roots to retain water in arid climates.
– They store water in various structures like leaves and stems.
– Succulents can go long periods without water due to their water-storing abilities.
– Geophytes may be considered succulents if they survive by dying back to underground storage organs.
– Xerophytes are plants adapted to dry environments, not all of which are succulents.

**2. Succulent Conservation and Threats:**
– Illegal trade in cacti and succulents is thriving.
– Several succulent species in South Africa are threatened with extinction due to poaching.
– Possession of protected succulents like Conophytum without authorization is illegal in certain South African provinces.

**3. Succulent Families, Genera, and Habitats:**
– Many plant families have multiple succulent species within them.
– Some families like Aizoaceae, Cactaceae, and Crassulaceae have mostly succulent species.
South Africa is home to around a third of all succulent species, mostly in the succulent Karoo biome.
– Succulents are found on every continent except Antarctica.
– The world’s driest areas are not ideal succulent habitats due to the challenges for low-growing plants.

**4. Commercial Use of Succulents:**
– Succulents are often grown as ornamental plants due to their unique appearance and minimal care requirements.
– Commercially, succulents may exclude cacti and other plant groups.
– Potted succulents can thrive in most indoor environments with minimal care.
– Succulents are commercially presented based on customer identification.
– Properly potted succulents need little maintenance indoors.

**5. Succulent Propagation, References, Organizations, and Publications:**
– Vegetative propagation is the most common method for succulent propagation.
– Numerous references provide information on succulent plants, including books, journals, and conservation plans.
– Organizations like the Cactus and Succulent Society of America promote education, conservation, and cultivation.
– Succulent publications cover topics such as trade, care, conservation, and specific genera.
– Membership in succulent societies provides access to expert knowledge and plant care tips.

Succulent plant (Wikipedia)

In botany, succulent plants, also known as succulents, are plants with parts that are thickened, fleshy, and engorged, usually to retain water in arid climates or soil conditions. The word succulent comes from the Latin word sucus, meaning "juice" or "sap".

Succulent plants have thickened stems, or leaves, such as this Aloe.

Succulent plants may store water in various structures, such as leaves and stems. The water content of some succulent organs can get up to 90–95%, such as Glottiphyllum semicyllindricum and Mesembryanthemum barkleyii. Some definitions also include roots, thus geophytes that survive unfavorable periods by dying back to underground storage organs may be regarded as succulents. The habitats of these water-preserving plants are often in areas with high temperatures and low rainfall, such as deserts, but succulents may be found even in alpine ecosystems growing in rocky soil. Succulents are characterized by their ability to thrive on limited water sources, such as mist and dew, which makes them equipped to survive in an ecosystem that contains scarce water sources.

Succulents are not a taxonomic category, since the term describes only the attributes of a particular species; some species in a genus such as Euphorbia, or family such as Asphodelaceae may be succulent, whereas others are less so or not at all. Many plant families have multiple succulent species found within them, more than 25 plant families. In some families, such as Aizoaceae, Cactaceae, and Crassulaceae, most species are succulents. In horticultural use, the term is sometimes used in a way that excludes plants that botanists would regard as succulents, such as cacti. Succulents are often grown as ornamental plants because of their striking and unusual appearance, as well as their ability to thrive with relatively minimal care.

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