Hylaeaicum myrmecophilum


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An oddity from the Amazon and eastern slopes of the Andes is nearly always found in association with certain species of ants, growing out of their arboreal nests where it receives protection from predators, fertilizer in a nutrient poor environment and possibly pollination and seed dispersal services.

In spite of its constant association with ants in the wild, it grows quite well without their help in cultivation. The plant grows in an open loose rosette of stiff, but long and strappy, spiny leaves. The foliage is green, but blushes reddish in strong light.

The center flushes red to orange with tiny white flowers. Culture in hanging pots or baskets due to its stoloniferous habit.