This is another South African native with teardrop-shaped leaves, which is the etymology of its name. The plant is evergreen, and its vertical leaves further affirm its uniqueness. It grows in the Western Cape Province of South Africa and the Kingdoms of Lesotho and Eswatini.
|Scientific Name:||Senecio Citriformis|
|Other Names:||String of Tears, Curio Citriformis, Senecio Pusillus.|
|Growth Season:||Autumn to Spring.|
|Preferred Temperature:||It does best in temperatures between 21 and 27oC (70-80oF) in the daytime and 13-18oC (55-66oF). Also, it is moderately frost-hardy and can withstand temperatures as low as -5oC but not lower.|
|Hardiness Zone:||USDA Zone 10-11b.|
|Average Mature Height & Width:||[Send me the information]|
|Dormancy:||It dorms in winter when the cold causes growth hormones to stop working.|
|Toxicity:||Every part of this plant is toxic to humans and pets when ingested.|
Senecio Citrifoemos Physical Characteristics
It is a scrambling succulent with spindle-shaped leaves with a rough surface that causes them to sometimes appear like lemons, thus its specific name. The foliage is covered with grey-green farina, and they have transparent veins. The plant may be characterized as a dwarf, and its stems are partially upright. The stems spread underground from the plant’s fleshy rootstock, forming a massive cluster as the shoots spring from underground.
The teardrop-shaped, vertical leaves are soft-green to deep green, each with clear longitudinal stripes. The leaves may appear translucent when exposed to intense light. It produces short inflorescence from which flower heads grow in late summer and winter. The flowers are small and cream-yellow.
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Senecio Citriformis Care
Senecio Citriformis is opportunistic and will grow whenever the condition is suitable. Too much water and shade make the plant grow in an unruly form. It would help if you watered it regularly, about weekly, during its growth. Drench the substrate and then allow all the water to sip through draining holes leaving the soil moist. You might notice the leaves falling off. This might mean you are overwatering it and must hold off to allow them to grow back.
Keep humidity under 50% since the plant is vulnerable to rotting. It can survive in various substrate types, including loamy soil, but the best pottage is a cactus mix. It is advisable to feed this plant regularly during its growing season, at least once per month, with water-soluble fertilizers with high potassium and phosphorus levels but low nitrogen content.
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
It can fill a 25 cm pot in only one year. This means that repotting is something you have to do regularly.
It is by leaf and stem cuttings because it hardly ever produces seed. Sticking the leaf or stem in moist soil in warm conditions will cause it to root in 2-6 weeks. Prune this succulent when it gets too leggy and unattractive or if it overgrows due to overwatering. You can use the pruned material to propagate.
It is vulnerable to mealybugs and snails; they aren’t a significant threat, but you must watch out to avoid infestation.
Richard | Editor-in-chief at Succulent City
Hey everyone! I’m Richard. Welcome to my blog, which is all about succulents, cacti, and a bit about air plants. Ten years back, in 2013, I began my journey with succulents. It started as a simple hobby, crafting and selling charming succulent-themed pins and decorations. But as time passed, my fascination with these remarkable plants grew, and I gained extensive knowledge about them. Therefore, Succulent City is the blog as you see it is now. Enjoy your visit and happly planting!