Leatherpetal

A succulent that's easy to grow !
Common name : Leatherpetal
Scientific name : Graptopetalum paraguayense
Family : Crassulaceae
Category : Perennials
Type of plant : Perennial
Evergreen
Evergreen
Minimal water
Minimal water
Flowery
Flowery
Graptopetalum is a genus of a dozen species native to Mexico and Arizona. The name comes from the fact that the petals (petalum) are spotted (grapto). The species G. paraguayense is the most popular as a houseplant or in the garden in warm regions - it withstands frosts up to -10 ° C approximately. It is a succulentpland with a spreading or crawling habit, growing up to 20 cm high and 60 cm wide, with thick and fleshy green leaves, spirally arranged around the stem and easily detachable from the rosette. Its flowers appear in spring with five red-dotted white petals.

Sowing & planting

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F
M
A
M
J
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D

Flowering

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F
M
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M
J
J
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S
O
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D

Caracteristics

Exposition
Water needs
Granulométrie plants.granulometry_2
Frost-resistance Medium
Zone USDA 8b
Height 10 - 20
pH 6.5 - 6.8

Plant my leatherpetal

Typically a warm climate plant, this plant adapts especially well to the interiors of our homes and apartments. It develops well between temperatures of 18-22°C (and cooler in winter, if possible), and it requires a lot of light! You can plant it in open soil if the temperatures in your area don't drop below 0°C - otherwise, keep it in a pot and shelter it before the frosts !

Water my leatherpetal

Your leatherpetal dislikes excessive watering, as its water needs are pretty limited — it stores everything it needs inside its thick leaves! During growth seasons (spring, summer), watering should be regular, about once or twice a month, but controlled, to make sure the roots don't rot. In autumn, gradually reduce watering until winter, when once-monthly watering will suffice.

Spray my leatherpetal

In dry weather, spray your plant with soft water and clean the dust on the leaves: it will be all the more beautiful! Note that this plant tends to grow in the direction of the sun : turn it around it a little, regularly !

Prune my leatherpetal

When some branches do not have a good look or are too old, you can prune, ideally in spring, after flowering. The best way is to cut by hand by breaking the stems gently. Be sure to keep 3 to 5 leaves on each branch, otherwise pruning may weaken it too much.

Fertilize my leatherpetal

Never ! Your leatherpetal likes poor soils, really!

Repot my leatherpetal

At the end of the winter every 3 or 4 years, repot your plant in a pot slightly larger than the current, with a mixture of sand and potting soil.

Propagate my leatherpetal

Your leatherpetal multiplies very easily by cuttings: it survives in fact several days without roots! Take a twig of 7 to 10 centimeters, but sometimes a simple broken leaf can do the trick! Let it dry for a few days until a "callus" appears - it's a small bulge - at its base, normally within 4 days. Then put it in a pot on the surface of a sand substrate or mix slightly damp soil / sand. Keep it in a room at about 20-25 ° C, and in a location with lots of light, but not in direct sunlight! Water moderately, allowing the surface of the substrate to dry between 2 waterings. After a few days, an identical seedling will appear at the base of the leaf: transplant the seedlings into another pot after about 3 months.

Check on my leatherpetal

Your leatherpetal is not very sensitive to diseases, except when it is too watered. It can then be attacked by mealybugs or kermes, mildew or thrips. Mealybugs are sucking biting insects covered with a sort of waxy or powdery shell. If the leaves become sticky and become covered with sooty mold and the infected parts of the plant dry up, spray rapeseed oil to smother them. Thrips is a small, 1 to 2 mm pitting insect that appears in hot, dry weather, much like red spiders. A spray of water slightly soaped on the leaves at the first outbreaks may contain it. In all cases, check the frequency of your watering, and possibly the hygrometry of the room.

Put outside my leatherpetal

Do not hesitate to take out your leatherpetal for the summer! Just avoid placing it directly in direct sunlight or in a situation with too little shelter - acclimatize it slowly, and of course, watch the watering! You should bring it inside at the end of the summer.

Shelter my leatherpetal

Bring back your leatherpetal inside long before the first cool nights, ideally in a room not too heated so that it "feels" it is actually winter. It is also on this condition that it will produce small star-shaped flowers in early spring: a good winter period cool with 5 to 10 ° C at night without artificial light is needed! You will water once a month in winter.

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