I saw this plant listed online at House of Plants and couldn’t stop thinking about it for three days. So I finally went in to get it–and when I saw it in person, it was cute, but I was just not quite sure if it was what I wanted. After chatting with the owner, she mentioned that most people would probably find the peperomia hope an easier plant–due to the likelihood to overwater the kalanchoe. So I went home with a peperomia hope, which is also trailing and has these round, succulent leaves. And I was like, This is maybe an even cuter plant and I shall be content.
But then, on the drive home, I was tempted three times to do a U-turn and go back for it. I resisted.
The next day, I was tempted to drive over again, walk through the doors, and give a fake, light-hearted, “Ha ha! I am back! I just can’t resist that plant!” and imagined getting a half-smiled “ha-ha sure…” in response (because clearly I care too much and am pretending not to). And again, I resisted.
Finally, either that night, or the one after, I had a nightmare, a legit nightmare, that I could no longer get the plant. Not getting the plant led to some pretty dark stuff. There was even an imposter plant. And this time, when I woke up, I decided that resistance is futile and I just really like kalanchoes, OK? So I went back and got it and now it’s all mine.
You remind me of the babe…
- Binomial name: Kalanchoe marnieriana
- Given name: Jareth, because at this point, why not
- Native to: moist, rocky environment in northeast Madagascar
- Bought: July 28, 2021 at House of Plants
- Original pot: 6 inch plastic hanging pot
Field notes–Aug 27, 2021
- Soil: moist; last watered 11 days ago. Needs better draining soil.
- Noon: ~200 FC
- 3:20 pm: ~500 FC
- Longest strand: 42 cm long (already grown since date of purchase)
- Number of strands: 6 main hanging, 11 new upshoots
- New growth: Yes! Some little offshoots have grown much larger.
- Signs of pests:
- mealy-bug, I think, on a stem
- red-orange spidery mites in the soil (good or bad?)
- thrips larvae in the soil? Something there, at any rate.
- Signs of care issues: wilted leaves, probably due to overwatering
- Propagation: About three weeks ago, I clipped off some broken stems and set them in a container to propagate. I also started propagating from leaves. The leaves are coming along, but it’s hard to tell how the stems are doing.
- After taking the above pictures, I repotted the plant into a cut-down plastic pot inside a new glazed ceramic hanging planter. I hope if there’s any water in the bottom part of the soil, the ceramic will help to leech it away so it can dry better.
- 2 parts cactus/succulent mix : 1 part perlite
- Topped with diatomaceous earth, in case any pests are lingering in the soil that remained on the roots.
- Light: a lot, but avoid direct sun from later morning to early afternoon
- Humidity: low
- Temperature: 20 to 29 degrees Celsius is optimal; do not go below 0
- Preference: soak and dry method; do not overwater; do not put water on leaves
- Frequency: when fully dry, when leaves are slightly wrinkled
Soil, fertilization, and pots
- Soil type: rich in organic matter and well-draining. Mix of clay, sand, pumice, perlite, or something rocky
- Fertilization: biweekly balanced liquid fertilizer in summer
- Repotting: after purchase, when prone to infestations, if soil is poor. Otherwise, every 2 years. Glazed or terracorra pots are preferable.
- Gently remove from pot and shake to remove excess soil from roots.
- Place in fresh medium and don’t water for at least 2 days.
- Grow style: fast
- Maturity: 30 to 60 cm tall, 60 to 90 cm wide (outdoors)
- Common problems:
- mealybugs, slugs, snails
- too much light (signs: leaves browning)
- Pruning: not necessary; as desired. Aerial roots can be removed.
- Stem cuttings:
- Snip a stem and allow callus to form in a warm, dry place for a couple days.
- Place in well-draining soil; water when completely dry.
- Leaf cuttings
- Place cactus/succulent soil on a shallow tray.
- Place fallen or snipped leaves on the soil.
- Place in indirect light. New growths will form at the edges of leaves.
- Water or mist soil to add moisture as needed.
- Stem cuttings: