Graptopetalum Macdougallii belongs to the family Crassulaceae in the tribe of Sedeae and is a native of Arizona and Mexico. The following is some information about the plant at a glance:
- It does well under full sunlight
- It doesn’t do well in waterlogged soil
- It isn’t cold-hardy
- It has green flowers
- You can propagate it using leaves, cuttings, offsets, or seeds.
Physical Description Of Graptopetalum Macdougallii
This plant has bluish-greenish leaves that grow in rosettes. The leaves are pointed at the end, forming a sharp apex arranged into rosettes. These rosettes grow in all plant directions, with the older ones drooping as the younger rosettes point upwards. A single rosette can reach three inches in width and carry up to fifty leaves. These leaves increase in weight pulling the rosette down as they become more extensive. That’s how older rosettes tend to taper downwards.
The pointed leaves are round and tongue-shaped, and each one can attain a maximum length of 1.4 inches and a width of 0.6 inches. The Macdougallii’s flowers are green, but they have deep red lines. Each flower has five petals.
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Placement and Lighting
Due to its affinity for sunlight, Graptopetalum Macdougallii does best outdoors. It would help if you positioned it to get either full or partial sunlight most of the day as its growth depends on it. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t have it as an indoor plant. You can keep it as long as it gets to access enough sunlight through the windows.
Planting it indoors is especially desirable if you live in cold areas. This plant is cold-hardy, and it will die if exposed to temperatures below -6.7o Celsius (20o F). If the leaves start turning yellow when inside the house, it indicates it is not getting enough sunlight.
Take it out when it is not too dreary to have it enjoy six to eight hours of sunlight, and then take it back inside to keep it from freezing.
How To Water Graptopetalum Macdougallii
Its watering needs are typical of other succulents. The general rule of thumb is that it shouldn’t sit on the water. Waterlogged soil causes this plant’s roots to rot, detrimental to the plant’s survival. You should also avoid having waterlogged on the rosettes of the plant. If water seats on rosettes, it can lead to leaf rot.
Therefore, the best way to water is to water from the roots. Flooding from the sources involves taking a tab and filling it with clean water up to about half the height of your Macdougallii’s pot. You then take the plant and dip it in the bill–bank first. The water will seep through the pot and water the plant. How fast water reaches the roots depends on the type of planter you are using, but even the most waterproof one will water your succulent eventually because it has drainage holes. It would help if you never planted a succulent in a pot without drainage.
Because this plant doesn’t do well in waterlogged soil, you should plant it in well-draining soil. This kind of soil allows you to maintain the necessary moisture level without being watery. Ensure the ground is an equal mix of loamy and sandy soil if you plant it outdoors. If you want to use a commercial pottage mix, buy the cactus mix and add some pumice to make it even easier to drain.
How To Feed Graptopetalum Macdougallii
Graptopetalum isn’t fed intensively. You don’t need to give it any extra fertilizer in the first year if the soil you planted is rich. After the first year, you should apply half-strength succulent fertilizer to it monthly during its growing season. It grows in spring and summer, so that’s when you should fertilize the soil. Be wary of over-fertilization; it causes discoloration of leaves and impedes the plant’s general health. Stop applying fertilizer if the leaves start yellowing, and the problem will resolve.
Pests & Diseases
This succulent doesn’t suffer from too many pests and diseases. Mealybugs can be a menace if you have planted them indoors, but you can easily manage them with pesticide soap. You can also use liquid kitchen soap, mix it with water and spray the infested leaves. Neem and pyrethrum-based pesticides also come in handy.
The primary disease affecting Graptopetalum Macdougallii is root rot which you can avoid by avoiding overwatering the plant. Always err on the side of caution.
How To Propagate Graptopetalum Macdougallii
This plant has three propagation methods: leaf, cuttings, offsets, and seeds. The following is how you propagate each.
Propagation by Leaf and cuttings
If you are propagating using a leaf, follow these steps:
- Cut a healthy, mature leaf from the plant. The best leaves for propagation are always the ones on the lower side of the plant. Make sure they aren’t dried up with age, as some of the leaves in the rosette are wont to do from time to time.
- Allow the leaf to be calloused under a shade for about three or four days.
- Put the leaf-cutting in the potting soil. The soil should be suitable for the growth of Graptopetalum according to the characteristics we shall discuss later.
- Keep the soil moist but not too wet as this is the ideal watering condition for the plant.
If you are propagating using a cutting, cut it with a clean, sterilized knife from a healthy stem. There should be nodes in the cuttings because rooting happens at the node. Treat your cutting the same way you treat the leaf as described above.
Propagation by Offsets
Graptopetalum Macdougallii produces offsets which form when the mother plant sends roots out into the soil, and other plants develop from the edges of these roots.
You can let the offset grow into an independent plant in the same pot with enough space or move it into a different pot for a new plant.
Move the offset, allowing it to grow until it takes the plant form, and cut it off from the mother at the root using a sterilized blade. Put the baby plant in a pot of moist, well-drained soil and allow it to grow. An offset sources faster than a leaf or cutting, and it becomes a plant more quickly since it is already relatively well-formed.
Propagation by Seeds
Buy certified seeds for these succulents. Certified seeds ensure more excellent production than any seeds you might produce at home unless you are an expert. Plant the seeds one inch deep in a pot or bed and water gently from time to time. The seeds can take up to a month to germinate, after which little rosettes will start emerging. Transplant them into their pots and continue with the care routine we shall describe later in this article.
You should propagate the plant at the beginning of spring to take advantage of its growing season, which is spring and summer. Planting at any other time will only prolong the waiting period. It may even cause your cuttings and seeds to rot.
This plant is relatively easy to maintain, giving you a grand appearance in your garden. Don’t keep it in freezing temperatures; anything under -6.7o Celsius (20o F) will kill it. Don’t overwater or over-fertilize it, and you will enjoy excellent benefits at minimum input. More of the Graptopetalum genus are below:
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