Two species of Xerophyta – X. viscosa and X. humilis – have been studied at the molecular level. Both are native to southern Africa. Like other monocots, Xerophyta spp. lose their chlorophyll during desiccation. Seedlings also lose desiccation tolerance briefly upon germination and recover it gradually during seedling development. X. viscosa, the only species with a sequenced genome, is a chasmophyte. It is also self-incompatible and thus shows a high degree of heterozygosity. In contrast, X. humilis, for which transcriptome resources are available, is a non-chasmophyte.