The echeveria plant, also called alabaster rose , is actually a whole genus of succulent plants that is part of the Crassulaceae family. However, when we talk about the alabaster rose or the echeveria plant, the common thing is that we refer to the Echeveria elegans , the most common in gardening thanks to both its beauty and the great resistance that they display.
If you want to learn how to care for the echeveria plant to have it at home, join us in this article where you will find a very practical guide.
Characteristics of the echeveria plant and types
The main characteristics of the echeveria plant are the following:
- It is a genus of succulents, native to Mexico and Brazil, with about 400 species.
- Very resistant to drought conditions.
- It also resists large thermal variations very well.
- Its succulent blue-green leaves form a rosette of about 8 cm in diameter, from which it receives its nickname of alabaster rose.
- Its stems reach heights of up to 20 cm.
- It produces pink or yellowish flowers, from winter to spring.
Some of the main types of the echeveria plant are:
- Echeveria elegans
- Echeveria pilosa
- Echeveria glauca
- Echeveria plvinata
- Echeveria agavoides
- Echeveria gibbiflora
- Echeveria runyonii
Echeveria plant: care – practical guide
In a small summary, we can indicate that these are the main cares of the echeveria plant :
- Light: the ideal is a very bright place with a few hours of soft direct light.
- Location: they can be located indoors, but the ideal is outdoors.
- Climate: they withstand temperatures of up to 27 ºC and mild frosts without problems.
- Irrigation: only when the substrate dries, by immersion.
- Substrate: specific for succulents, with very good drainage.
Light and location
Echeverías are a plant that needs to be in a space with a lot of lighting , but that may not tolerate direct exposure to the sun in very hot climates or with very intense light.
For this reason, it is best to locate them outdoors , in an area with great lighting and where they receive a few hours of direct light, either early in the morning or in the afternoon, outside the hours of greatest insolation at noon. In the garden, they are very commonly used to fill difficult spaces for other plants, with little soil or in rocky areas. Indoors, it is best to place them in a very well lit room , preferably near a window or light source that provides a few hours of mild sunlight.
In principle, the echeveria is a temperate climate plant. This means that the ideal is that the temperature remains between 21 ºC and 27 ºC in the warm months, and that it does not drop much beyond 15 ºC in winter, at least for a long time. From time to time, it can withstand higher temperatures (although its leaves may burn if they receive too intense sun) or much lower temperatures, even mild frosts. These will not be fatal or overly damaging as long as they are fleeting, but prolonged exposures can do a lot of damage to echeveria.
Watering the echeveria plant
As with practically all succulents, overwatering can become one of your main threats. The usual thing is to water once the surface layer of the substrate has been completely dry. Watering too much can cause your plant’s roots to rot, leading to its death or great damage. A very common practice in this type of plants is watering by immersion , that is, putting the entire pot in water for a few minutes, so that the plant takes the water it needs and the rest is filtered without further ado.
Substrate for the succulent plant echeveria
It is vital that the echeveria substrate offers very good drainage , especially if we are going to water it by immersion, which is highly recommended. Use a succulent plant mix and add pearlite, or make your own with sand and pearlite. Outdoors, place it where rainwater does not accumulate, always avoiding puddles.
Transplantation and maintenance
Like most plants, echeveria will need an occasional transplant. A good sign to know that this moment has arrived is when the roots of the plant appear through the holes in the pot for drainage.
Regarding maintenance, echeveria does not need pruning or special care, since, as we have said, it is a fairly resistant plant. Simply ensure that the drainage holes in the pot are not clogged so that excess water can be removed without problems and pay attention to dry or diseased parts to remove them immediately.