It is endemic to sub-Saharan Africa’s arid regions, including eastern and southwestern Africa. It is also found in the Arabian Peninsula. A thick stem and few leaves characterize this succulent. Bonsai enthusiasts use it for art.
|Desert Rose, Kudu, Sabi Star, Impala Lily, Mock Azalea
|USDA Zone 10-11
|The Desert Rose is toxic and may cause stomach upsets, dizziness, lethargy, slow heartbeat, low blood pressure, and slow heartbeat. You should seek medical attention immediately after ingestion.
Adenium Desert Rose Physical Characteristics
The Desert Rose typically starts as a small, slow-growing shrub with a swollen, bulbous base known as a caudex. This caudex can become massive over time, sometimes resembling a tree trunk. The stem is thick and often covered in a smooth, grayish-green bark.
The leaves are glossy, thick, fleshy, and deep green. Each leaf is lance-shaped and can vary in size, but they generally measure 2 to 4 inches (5 to 10 cm) in length. The leaves are adapted to minimize water loss, which helps the plant survive in arid conditions.
The most beautiful aspect is the trumpet-shaped flowers. These blooms in a wide range of colors: pink, red, white, and yellow. The petals of Desert Rose flowers can show intricate patterns and color gradients. Each flower often has five petals; when in full bloom, they can measure 2 to 3 inches (5-7.5 cm) in diameter.
After the Desert Rose blooms, it produces seed pods. These pods can grow up to several inches long and contain numerous small seeds. The pods start green and gradually turn brown as they mature and dry.
The roots are adapted to its arid habitat. They are shallow and widespread, allowing the plant to capture surface moisture efficiently.
The size of a mature Desert Rose depends on its age, growing conditions, and pruning (30 cm to 90 cm) on average. Some plants with good care tips may remain relatively compact, while older, unpruned plants can grow into small trees, reaching 3 to 6 feet (0.9-1.8 meters) or more.
Due to its unique appearance, adaptability, and ability to develop a thick caudex, Adenium Obesum can be a popular choice for bonsai enthusiasts. It can create a stunning bonsai specimens.
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Adenium Obesum Plant Care
Light: This Adenium loves the sun. Full sunlight is necessary for it to bloom. The desert rose can grow healthy with morning and evening sunlight by keeping it near eastern and western windows.
Watering: It needs water to thrive, but not too much. You should water it moderately when hot (1-2 times/week) and sparingly during cold weather (every 4-6 weeks). It is always advisable to completely deplete water from the previous drink before giving the plant another drink. One may not have control over the amount of water when it rains. Therefore, you shouldn’t plant this succulent outdoors. Plant it on a slope and ensure the soil is well drained to allow the water to flow.
Fertilizer: Feed it with a slow-release liquid fertilizer from time to time. Spring is an ideal feeding time since it then comes from dormancy.
Temperatures: You should provide a warm and dry environment and protect it from temperatures below 50°F (10°C). Consider growing it in a container that can be moved indoors during the winter in colder climates.
Soil: Use a well-draining soil mix designed for cacti and succulents.
Or create your own mix by combining regular potting soil with perlite or coarse sand.
Adenium Obesum Growth
This plant can overgrow, so it is necessary to prune it to keep it fit. Ensure you prune it continuously in the growing season. Also, remove dead leaves. Repotting is needful as the plant outgrows previous pots, but it is unlikely you will need to re-pot earlier than every two to three years. It is relatively slow-growing.
Cutting through sowing seeds is a viable option for the plant’s best propagation. Root rot is the most common disease for Adenium Obesum. However, it is easy to deal with it by watering it appropriately. Aphids, mealybugs, spider mites, and scale insects may be challenging.
Commonly asked questions about Adenium Obesum
A question from u/caudexer: “Hey guys, I’m hoping someone can advise me whether this pot is suitable for this adenium? I’ve been told they like small pots, however, recently I saw a user on here say that they grow much quicker when given more space.. just thought I would ask before I pot her up. Just finished root pruning and bought this new pot, however now I’m concerned it’s too shallow and may cause it to grow too slowly. Should I get a bigger pot? Or will the roots grow sideways Thanks so much ❤️“
Answer: I think this pot is totally fine for this Adenium. Adenium Obesum is considered a slow-growing succulent, so if you push it to grow quicker, it is unnatural. About the roots, it is shallow to help it maintain humidity level and avoid underwatering.
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