If you are around here, it means that you are a great lover of gardening and want to know more, or you have just started in this wonderful world and you are still a little lost. Precisely, in this article you will find everything you need about the care and cultivation of echeveria, a plant that always looks splendid.
The plant of which we are going to explain guidelines and keys on how to care, is none other than one of the most beautiful among the succulents, echeveria or alabaster rose .
Read on to become an expert and you can get down to work to include this plant in your garden.
WHAT IS THE ECHEVERIA PLANT LIKE?
Next, we are going to explain the basic characteristics of the echeveria plant. It is interesting that you know this information because it is something that determines the maintenance and cultivation requirements.
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Division: Magnoliophyta
- Class: Magnoliopsida
- Order: Saxifragales
- Family: Crassulaceae
- Subfamily: Sempervivoideae
- Genus: echeveria
The echeveria is within the genus of succulents or also called succulents . These types of species are those capable of storing large reserves of water in their tissues to be able to cope with times of drought.
Within the Crassulaceae family we can find approximately 400 different species distributed throughout the world, where many of them are native to Mexico and the rest are distributed throughout the American continent.
One of the most popular species used in gardening for its resistance is scientifically known as Echeveria elegans . Not only does it have a particular beauty and great ornamental value, but it is also capable of withstanding extreme conditions of lack of water or high temperatures.
Other species that are also well known within the genus Echeveria are the following:
- Echeveria agavoides
- Echeveria glauca
- Echeveria runyionii
- Echeveria setosa
APPEARANCE AND SHAPE OF THE ECHEVERIA PLANT
The morphology of these succulent plants is very similar within the different species, although with some small differences. The main thing is fleshy and flattened leaves , arranged symmetrically in the form of a rosette . This particular arrangement similar to the petals of a rose has also earned it the nickname of alabaster rose.
Depending on the species, the leaves will have some shades or others. For example, in the case of Echeveria elegans, its leaves are blue and oval.
Now that you know a little more echeveria, let’s start with the reason that has led you to come here, and that is to know how you have to take care of it. We get down to work!
ECHEVERIA CARE GUIDE
Whether it is one species or another of echeveria that you have chosen, as you have seen it is a resistant plant and, therefore, its care is quite basic. These needs are general and serve for all species found within succulents.
LOCATION, LIGHT AND TEMPERATURES
If you are going to use echeveria as a houseplant, it is important that you place it in a well-lit place that has a period of direct sunlight. Be careful with this part of direct sun, because in hot areas and in the middle of summer, its leaves could lose their original appearance and present burns.
You can also place it in a pot on the terrace, and enjoy its care indoors . Remember to choose porous materials such as ceramic and terracotta, and preferably be wide containers with holes in the base.
These plants are mainly for outdoor use. However, as we mentioned before, there are also those who use them as an indoor plant and it works very well. In a garden they are perfect for covering difficult places with little soil , such as rockery or sloping areas.
Regarding the temperatures for the echeveria, in times like spring and summer the ideal is that the temperature does not exceed 35 ºC, at least if they are exposed to direct sun. From time to time it can withstand very hot conditions , but being so, it should be located in a semi-shaded area.
In cold conditions, we are talking about plants that are also resistant, although their growth stops below 5 ºC. In cases of very cold areas, it is better to grow it as a houseplant.
As long as you keep it in a cool place , you don’t need to worry too much about the humidity in the environment.
WHAT SUBSTRATE AND COMPOST DOES THE ECHEVERIA NEED
The substrate that your echeveria will need will depend mainly on whether you are going to grow it in a pot or in the garden. However, as a good succulent plant, it will require a loose and airy substrate.
In the case of potting , it will require a sandy substrate or universal cultivation soil mixed with perlite. Although if you prefer not to complicate too much, you can try special preparations for succulents.
If, on the other hand, it is going to be grown in a garden, the ideal is to plant it in well-drained soil. Although it is a type of plant that tolerates conditions of water scarcity, what does not stand well are flooding. Use a mixture of sand and leaf mulch.
Providing organic matter well mixed with the soil also considerably improves the accumulated water and allows the roots to be better oxygenated. This strategy will save you from a tight spot in heavy rain conditions.
You will discover that it is not a very demanding plant when it comes to nutrients. However, if you give it a little compost in early spring, you will see how it grows and blooms more abundantly.
WHEN SHOULD I WATER MY ECHEVERIA?
As we saw at the beginning, the echeveria stores water in its leaves and therefore, they are plants that can withstand long periods without rain . If you plant it directly in the ground, it will have greater autonomy in this regard.
Therefore, it is best to water only if the surface of the earth is completely dry, because an excess of water can cause the roots to rot.
Being a plant that grows very compactly, if you have it in a pot you can water by immersion, immersing it for a few minutes in water so that the soil absorbs what it needs.
As with many other plants, in times with higher temperatures such as summer, it will be necessary to increase the waterings while with colder you will have to reduce them.
We speak of 2 irrigations per week in spring and summer and 1 irrigation every 10/15 days in winter.
TRANSPLANT AND PRUNING CONDITIONS
The echeveria does not need any pruning. It is only necessary that you go eliminating those leaves that are in poor condition. In this way, you will prevent them from being the common thread of any disease.
Ideally, you should transplant in spring when you see that the plant is too big for the volume of the pot and the roots are poking out of the bottom hole.
To do this, use a pot large enough so that it can grow without problems. Use a compost for succulents mixed with perlite.