Conophytum mirabile (ex type locality, east of Springbok)

This species is known from just one quartzite hill, hence the vagueness of the locality. It was originally discovered by Anthony Mitchell in the 1980s but not brought into cultivation until rediscovered in 1999 on an expedition sponsored by National Geographic. Out of flower, the hairy bodies could easily be confused with C. stephanii, but the large day-opening flowers are quite different. I visited the colony in 2000 and an African shepherd family living at the base of the hill told us that they remembered a man with a bicycle (i.e. Mr. Mitchell) visiting it many years earlier. It is not difficult to grow but rather slow to build up large clumps.