Kalanchoe plants are perennial and evergreen succulent houseplants that are almost 2 feet tall. They are native to Brazil, Southeast Asia and Madagascar. Kalanchoe plants are often raised as potted plants. They bloom in late winters and spring as the flowering season falls in between the late fall and late winters. These plants have a thick leafage with oval-shaped fleshy leaves and indented edges. The leaves are spread all over the sleek and tender stems of this beautiful kalanchoe plant. Kalanchoe plants make lovely indoor plants. Kalanchoe flowers are usually brightly-colored, mostly in shades of yellow, red, orange or purple. Care of kalanchoe plants is definitely an interesting activity. So let's learn more about kalanchoe plant care.
How to Care for Kalanchoe?
Kalanchoes are juicy plants and need warm temperatures to grow. The ideal temperature for a healthy kalanchoe to develop and bloom is 60º - 85º F. Due to their oversensitivity to cold temperatures, it should be noted that they cannot survive at a temperature less than 40º F. Kalanchoes are recommended to be grown in clay pots with excellent drainage pertaining to the extra delicate roots of kalanchoes. Clay pots allow a good aeration for the roots. The soil to be used in pots is a mixture of perlite, sand and peat moss. Avoid over soaking the soil with water as kalanchoes can survive on scarce water supply. Once the flowers have bloomed until late February, remove the dead stems and leaves. Re pot the kalanchoes and add a little limestone to the soil. Start adding fertilizers only after the plant starts growing again normally.
Kalanchoe Plant Care Instructions
- Kalanchoes, like all succulents, grow well in direct sunlight with moderate temperatures. So keep the pot indoors where it has ample access to sunlight and adequate warm temperatures. If kept outdoors, avoid keeping the pot in shaded areas. Pots for single kalanchoes can be of 4 inches. However, if one wants to grow kalanchoes in clusters, then a 6 inch pot should be fine.
- Kalanchoes do not need much water as they are already quite juicy plants. Water these plants once a week, and allow the soil mixture of perlite and sand to dry in every watering interval. Pebbles can be put inside the pot for better water draining.
- For the plant to bloom well, clean all the accumulated dead stems, leaves and stalks from under the plants as it makes them look unattractive. Regular pruning helps the plant in healthy flowering.
- Kalanchoes also have a resting period when they do not flower. When the winters get over, the flowering also stalls. This period starts from spring until late fall. Some people discard these plants as there are no more flowers until the late fall starts. But the lush green foliage is also a delight to watch. So, ensure that the plant is kept in open spaces for a healthy leafage.
- When buying a kalanchoe in the budding stage or during its flowering period, fertilization is not needed. However, for re blooming, start the fertilizing activity after the resting period is over. Some of the best recommended pot plant fertilizers are Bachman's Excel Gro™. During the resting period fertilizing should be minimal.
Kalanchoe plants are propagated by stem cutting method. So whenever you want to plant another kalanchoe, take the stem cuttings in late spring or summer and allow them to dry for a week or two. Then plant them in well-potted perlite-peat mixed soil. They are very much like cactus and can survive on sparse water supply. Care of the kalanchoe plant is definitely challenging when it comes to protecting them from mealybugs and mites that target the roots of the plant. Hence regular cleaning and pruning is a must in kalanchoe care.
The best place for these flowering houseplants in your home would be the bright windowsills. Kalanchoe plants indeed make beautiful indoor houseplants and add positivity and exuberance to your home. Due to their attractive colors, they make good gifts on housewarming occasions. Kalanchoe plant care requires great deal of effort and is definitely a challenge for every gardener. But at the same time, it is every gardener's delight too!
Water: Water moderately throughout the summer and reduce watering in the winter. Let the soil surface dry out between waterings, and in the winter, the plant can almost dry out. Watch the fleshy leaves for signs of water distress.
Temperature: They prefer warmth. Do not let fall below 55ºF.
Soil: An ordinary potting soil mix is fine.
Fertilizer: Feed bi-weekly in the summer with a liquid fertilizer, or use slow-release pellets.
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