This is a beautiful plant that even a novice gardener can take care of. It belongs to the genus Aeonium, a family of 35 succulent plants. The typical characteristics of Aeonium are glossy and waxy leaves that form rosettes. The rosettes are such a fantastic work of art by nature that one can easily mistake these succulents for artificial plants. The following are some things you need to know about Aeonium Mardi Gras, which is one of the members of this family.
Features Of Aeonium Mardi Gras
The Mardi Gras Aeonium is characterized by fantastic rosettes with emerald green and lemon yellow variegation. They also contain burgundy leaves. The color intensifies from pink to burgundy if you have grown the plant in bright light but in a relaxed environment. The succulent is named Mardi Gras after the colorful Mexican festival due to its colorfulness, as we have seen above.
This slow-growing plant attains a maximum height of 10 cm (4 inches) and 15 cm (6 inches) wide. The rosettes can produce flowers, but it takes a long time for this to happen. These plants have flowers only once, and then they die. They are, therefore, referred to as monocanopic. A monocanopic plant flowers only once before it dies.
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Care Guide of Aeonium Mardi Gras
Sunlight: In general, it requires bright indirect sunlight. Some intense sunlight isn’t a big problem for it, but not for a long period of time. If you want to keep it in the house during its winter growth season, place it near a window filled with plenty of light for the best effect. The ideal duration to get sunbathe is 6 to 8 hours per day.
Watering: You water it more during winter because that is its growing season. You should go easy on the watering during summer because the plant doesn’t need much water, only just enough to keep it alive. While watering these plants is a bit different in places with different temperatures. Some winters are colder than others leading to either longer or shorter water retention. The easiest way to determine how much to water your plant is by checking the moisture level in the soil. In the case of Aeonium Mardi Gras, if the soil is dry in the first inch of the pottage, you can go ahead and water the plant again.
Feeding: If you use the commercial potting mix when planting, you won’t need to feed the soil for the first year. After the first year, enrich the soil by giving it a half-strength fertilizer for succulents monthly during winter. Ensure the ground is moist when feeding. Remember that don’t increase the frequency of feeding or the strength of the fertilizer if you don’t want to kill your succulent.
Soil: It is important for you to plant it in well-draining soil. A mix of sand and loam usually works well. You can add pumice and the ordinary potting mix. Or you can purchase these potting mixes, which are available for sale in many shops.
Grooming: The plant needs minimal grooming due to its excellent natural appearance. The green leaves make the rosette look less symmetrical. However, it would help to cut off drooping leaves and overgrown outer leaves in a rosette. All you need to groom the plant is a sharp knife or a sharpened pair of scissors. Having the tool sharpened ensures that you don’t injure the succulent in the process.
Potting: When potting an Aeonium Mardi Gras, you should always use a gardening pot or container with draining holes in the bottom of it. To pot this succulent, pour the soil into the pot to fill it halfway or a little over halfway. Place the Aeonium Mardi Gras in the soil and cover its root with extra soil.
DO YOU KNOW? Caring (propagating, pruning/trimming, beheading, watering, …) is a set of skills that is widely applicable to succulents. Read the in-depth guide here >>Richard Miller – Succulent City
Aeonium Mardi Gras, unlike other varieties of Aeonium, is considered to be a toxic succulent due to its containing saponins. Thus, owners should wear gloves when handling the plant to avoid skin irritation.
Propagating Aeonium Mardi Gras
There are four ways of propagating the Aeonium Mardi Gras; stem cuttings, leaves, offsets, and seeds.
Propagation by Cuttings
Follow the following steps.
- Get a sharp cutting tool, a knife, or a pair of scissors and sterilize it with alcohol or methylated spirit.
- Cut the stem from which you want to get cuttings. The knife’s sharpness is vital at this stage because you want to cut clean through the stem.
- Put the cutting under a shade to callous for three to four days.
- Stick the stem cutting a well-draining potting mix with the appropriate soil type and the proper moisture level. Rooting should start in two to three weeks.
You follow the above steps when you want to propagate using offsets. Just cut the baby plant instead of the stem.
To propagate by leaf, cut off a healthy, vital leaf at the base and follow the above process.
Propagation by Seeds
This is the slowest and often the most challenging propagation method. It takes a long, but the plant grows eventually. Buy certified seeds and keep them in well-drained soil and water.
Propagation Using Leaf Cuttings
Aeonium Mardi Gras can be propagated using leaf cuttings from the parent plant. To propagate using this method, find a healthy leaf on the parent plant. Whichever leaf you use shouldn’t have any damaged or discolored spots. Carefully cut off the leaf with clean scissors and place it in a dry area to give it a chance to callous for a few days. Then, in a new pot, pour in the correct soil to fill the pot about halfway, and place the propagated leaf in the soil. Water it as needed and wait for your new Aeonium Mardi Gras to grow.
Common Growing Problems
When growing any species of succulents, owners may encounter some problems – these problems are typically seen in all plants and can be mended most of the time. For Aeonium Mardi Gras, the most common growing problems are overwatering, under-watering, sunburns, damage from frost, minimal sunlight, and pests.
Pests tend to be more attracted to Aeonium Mardi Gras. The most common pest among this succulent is scaled. However, other pests, such as mealybugs, weevils, aphids, and even thrips, can be drawn to it.
Commonly Asked Question About Aeonium Mardi Gras
A thread from u/talkingtunataco501: “My aeonium ‘Mardi Gras’ isn’t looking so good. What can I do to help it?”
Answer: Personally, your succulent seems like it suffered from underwatering. This succulent is special because of the watering requirement. You should water it more often than regular succulents. Even if in the dormant season, you shouldn’t let it get too dry. If not, you will let the leaves shrink.
In conclusion, Aeonium Mardi Gras is a hardy, evergreen-like hybrid succulent that can survive with minimal attention. Therefore, this succulent is easy to care for and can be adequately handled by referring to the recommendations mentioned in this article.
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