Fans of indoor flowers are trying to choose different plants for their home flower garden: decorative and deciduous, beautifully flowering, small trees and shrubs, original succulents. If the area is limited or you want to create a corner of wildlife where there is a lack of light, a miniature haworthia exotic succulent, original in shape and color, will help out, combining decorativeness and unpretentiousness.
The flower looks great against the backdrop of deciduous and flowering plants, and several varieties planted in a beautiful pot will enliven home and office interiors.
Features of culture
A herbaceous evergreen plant – Haworthia from the Xanthorreaceae family in the wild is found in arid regions of the south and southwest of the African continent and belongs to leaf succulents that store moisture in the leaves. It grows in the shade of other flowers, stones, in tall grass, which contributes to less evaporation of moisture. A distinctive feature is small or large grayish-white, transparent growths on the surface of green, bluish, sometimes with a silvery tinge of leaves.
The name of the genus is given in honor of the entomologist and botanist E. Haworth (England), who described many species of plants and insects.
The decorativeness of the flower is given by a dense multi-row basal rosette of thick fleshy leaves of various shapes (wide or narrow triangle with a sharp tip, semi-oval). It may look like an unopened bud, a cone, a blossoming flower with spirally arranged petals. The height of the outlet at home is small – from 5 to 30 cm, in nature it sometimes reaches 1 m, but it will take more than a dozen years – the growth per year is only 1 mm. In some varieties, low stems form with age.
At home, havortia rarely blooms, the flowers on a long peduncle growing in the axils of the leaves are small, inconspicuous. The peduncle is pinched at the time of appearance or cut off when it grows up so that the plant does not waste strength on it. The flowering period begins in summer. There are monocarpic species, which are characterized by the death of the maternal rosette after flowering is completed. In its place are children.
Varieties of culture
There are more than 60 species in the haworthia genus, according to another classification – about 600. As indoor ornamental plants, varieties of different heights and colors are grown. Their care is the same.
Species, name, brief description:
- X. striped (H. fasciata) or haworthia fasciata – a rosette about 20 cm high is formed by long narrow green, sometimes with a burgundy tint, leaves with white growths merged into transverse stripes;
- X. pearl or pearl (H. margaritifera) – a loose rosette (height no more than 30 cm) rots after flowering, triangular leaves are covered with small pearl growths, large greenish-white or pure white flowers form on a long (about 40 cm) peduncle;
- H. Cooper (H. Сooperi) – thick oval leaves covered with bristles have an elongated long tip, the upper part is translucent and transmits light well, the color of the lower part can be different shades of green, bluish, pink, light brown, the peduncle is long (30 cm ), white flowers form an inflorescence-brush;
- X. scaphoid (H. cymbiformis) – leaves of light shades of green, rounded or triangular-oval, equipped with short spikes along the edge of the ribs, there are translucent areas on the surface, the peduncle is short, the flowers are white or greenish;
- H. lemon-leaved (H. limifolia) – convex transverse stripes are visible on the lower and upper surfaces of the lemon-yellow leaf with green splashes;
- H. tortuous (H. tortuosa) – in an adult plant, a stem is formed, densely covered with rounded greenish, light burgundy, bluish triangular thick leaves strewn with white small growths.
Conditions of detention
A thermophilic culture in nature grows in a warm climate, preferring semi-shady areas, tolerates dry periods well, storing moisture in leaf tissues. It is not difficult to create such conditions when growing at home – there is always a place in the apartment where there is no bright sun and it is not very hot.
The best place for shade-tolerant haworthia would be a western or eastern window – there is no direct sun there. The northern window needs illumination, otherwise the leaves will lose color saturation, and it will be hot on the southern flower without shading. You can keep the pot on a shelf, a stand near the window and periodically turn it so that the outlet is formed evenly, take it out to the balcony or garden in the summer, covering it from the sun in the heat.
For summer, the optimum temperature is from 18 to 27 ° C (higher temperatures are not critical with good care), for winter – from 10 to 15 ° C. Some varieties during the dormant period, the temperature must be lowered to 7-11 ° C. The minimum temperature at which the flower does not lose viability is +5 ° C.
The duration of the dormant period is about four months (November-March), and if the temperature is not lowered at this time, then the decorative effect is lost by spring. Sometimes during the rest the roots die off, but you can try to save the flower if you dig it into fresh soil and water it only occasionally.
Succulents in nature grow on rocky soil that often dries up during periods of drought, so they have adapted to such conditions. Lands with excess moisture and nutrients are not suitable for them. For most types of haworthia, soil with a neutral acidity or a slightly alkaline reaction is suitable, so peat should not be added to it in large quantities, which, moreover, quickly compacts, disrupting air permeability. You can use ready-made soil for succulents, cacti, adding a little steamed sand or perlite to it.
The composition of the soil mixture:
- the lower layer (drainage) – small pebbles, expanded clay, small pieces of broken bricks;
- middle layer – coarse sand, earth, humus in a ratio of 2: 1: 1;
- the top layer (1-1.5 cm) is perlite, expanded clay.
All components must be disinfected (poured with boiling water, manganese solution, steamed in a water bath) in order to destroy the eggs of parasites and pathogens.
Haworthia is unpretentious, its requirements are minimal, but for full development you need to know the characteristics of the culture and try to satisfy them. Caring for her at home consists of the usual procedures for watering, fertilizing, disease prevention and pest damage. If you create the necessary environment and take care of the flower, then it will delight its owner for 20 years.
How to water
Leaf succulents store moisture in the leaves and can go without watering for a long time, but it is better not to allow the soil to dry out completely and water it when it dries out by 2-3 cm. To avoid contrast between warm soil and cold water, you need to use settled for several days water. From sudden changes in temperature, the roots begin to rot.
Water abundantly (the earth in the pot should get wet), trying not to pour water into the outlet. The remaining moisture accumulated in the pan is drained. In winter, in a cool room, it is enough to water once every two weeks and in smaller volumes. Slightly shriveled leaves report the need for water. Spraying is not necessary, you just need to wipe off the dust.
A feature of succulents is slow growth, so the nitrogen content in the soil must be regulated. If you “overfeed” with organic matter, then cracks will appear on the leaves due to a mismatch in the growth of external and internal parts. After healing of wounds, scars remain on the sheet, spoiling the appearance.
In self-prepared dressings, it is impossible to take into account the content of one or another mineral substance, so the best option would be ready-made fertilizers for cacti and succulents (Agricola, Bona Forte, Flower Paradise, Pocon, Fasco) – mineral and organic substances are balanced in them. Concentrated fertilizer is diluted with water and applied to moist soil so as not to burn the roots.
During the growing season (spring-summer) fertilize once a month, if the dosage is halved, then twice. From November to March, when the flower is resting, you do not need to feed.
There is no need to repot haworthia often – it grows slowly, the roots grow 1 mm per year, so a large supply of nutrients is not required. A pot, always with drainage holes, is chosen so that the roots are not crowded, the distance between the walls and the outlet should be 2-3 cm.
If the plant is healthy, then transplantation is carried out by transshipment, if there are signs of illness, then the roots are freed from the ground, washed, cut off the damaged areas and treated with a fungicide. The tool must be disinfected before work to prevent infection. Care after transplantation is the same as for an adult culture.
How to transplant:
- lay a drainage layer (1/3 of the volume of the pot) from washed, scalded with boiling water and dried broken bricks, expanded clay, small pebbles;
- cross the plant, fill the voids with soil (the soil mixture option is given above), slightly compact, water;
- the root neck should be at the same level as in the old pot;
- pour decorative gravel, pebbles, expanded clay (1 cm) on top;
- for 10-14 days, put the pot in a cool room with diffused light, do not water for a week;
- the first top dressing after transplantation should be carried out in 20-28 days.
Possible diseases and pests
Succulents, including haworthia, when grown at home, get sick, most often due to violations in maintenance and care, so disease prevention is proper care and the creation of the environment necessary for development.
Problems how to deal:
- with a lack of light, the color becomes less saturated, the rosette loses density, elasticity – you need to move the plant to another place, set the backlight;
- a sharp change in diffused light to bright lighting leads to a burn – brown-brown spots appear on the leaves, in this situation the pot is rearranged to its original place, leaves with a large affected area are removed and the plant is gradually accustomed to bright light;
- frequent and abundant watering, stagnation of moisture leads to the appearance of gray rot – the roots rot, the leaves, especially the lower ones, wither and fall off;
- in a cool room with frequent watering, the roots rot, the base of the outlet – you need to adjust the mode and volume of watering;
- in fertile (“fatty”) soil, rotting of the roots begins, in acidic soil growth stops, so there should not be a lot of humus, organic matter in it, peat should be excluded.
Sucking insects can harm haworthia: spider mites, scale insects, mealybugs, thrips, which, eating juice, deprive the plant of nutrients. When affected by a mealybug, a grayish-white coating (like cotton wool) is clearly visible, the spider mite leaves behind a cobweb in the leaf axils, yellow spots and small brown dots on the leaves report the appearance of thrips, and a sticky coating indicates the presence of a scale insect.
If the insect is seen in the initial stage of spread, then mechanical removal of the pest with a wet sponge and spraying the entire plant with soapy water will help. The treatment is repeated 2-3 times with an interval of a week (the incubation period of insect development). The soil before processing must be covered with a film, then sprayed with a fungicide. In case of severe damage, insecticides Fufanon, Aktellik, Fitoverm will help.
The juicy pulp of the succulent, when it is taken out to the site in the summer, can be chosen by slugs and snails. They can be collected by hand, set traps, scare away with ash, tobacco and mustard powder (pour in places of accumulation, on the way of movement).
Haworthia is propagated with the help of daughter rosettes (kids), leaf cuttings and seeds. Basically, the first two methods are used, since the seed material is poorly stored, and six months after harvest, the seeds no longer germinate.
Transplantation is most often carried out in the spring, and it is very convenient to separate the children at this moment – you do not have to injure the plant again. It should be divided when the root system of the children is formed.
After dividing, young rosettes are planted in separate, small cups, watered and kept in a warm, shaded place for a week, then exposed to bright light, but without direct sun. When the seedling takes root, you can transplant it to a permanent place.
When propagated by cuttings, all the signs of the mother plant are preserved, and this method is used most often, since not all species form children. The stalk (leaf) is separated from the mother plant by twisting or cutting, having processed the tool. The wound on the outlet must be sprinkled with coal powder, treated with a fungicide.
- the stalk is kept in the air for several days – the cut should dry out;
- before planting, the cut site is treated with powdered coal, then with a root growth stimulator;
- the leaf is planted in a moistened substrate (equal parts of sand and perlite), deepened by 1 cm;
- a glass with a handle is placed in a warm, bright place, covered from the bright sun;
- watered rarely, moderately;
- when young sprouts appear, transplant into a small container.
If you decide to propagate by seeds, then they should be planted in early spring, given that the plant will develop slowly and most of the seedlings will die. For growing seedlings, a low container is suitable, on the bottom of which a drainage layer (1.5-2 cm) is poured, and a loose substrate is placed on it. Seeds are evenly spread over the surface of the moistened substrate, sprinkled (you can not fill it up) with sand and cover the container with a film, glass.
The seed method of reproduction does not guarantee the inheritance of the characteristics of the parent plant.
Germination requires heat and light, so the container is placed in a warm, bright place, but not in bright sun. The film must be opened daily to remove condensation. Germination is uneven, so the greenhouse is removed after most of the seeds germinate. Picking is carried out after 5-6 months.
Compact low haworthias can be grown as separate plants, as part of a composition made up of representatives of the genus, they grow well in florariums. The miniature size allows you to collect a collection of different types of exotic original plants in a small area.