How to plant kalanchoe?

How to Care for Your Kalanchoe Plant

This houseplant is very easy to take care of and will produce an abundance of long lasting flowers with very little care. It is a good choice for people that tend to forget to water their houseplants, as it likes to be on the drier side. Kalanchoe is a succulent, which means its leaves store water. As these plants are native to warm, tropical places, it does best in a warm environment.

Here are some tips on how to take care of your kalanchoe plant:

  • Kalanchoe needs plenty of light to bloom. Place potted plant close to a sunny window. Keep plant warm; temperatures between 13-29 degrees C (55-80 degrees F) would be ideal.
  • Plant in well-drained, well-aerated soil, such as 50% peat moss and 40% perlite.
  • It cannot tolerate cold temperatures. Avoid placing plants near drafts or cool windowsills.
  • Use a clay pot to plant the kalanchoe, as the roots can be quite sensitive.
  • Like other succulents, kalanchoes do not need much water. Allow the soil to dry in between watering. Do not over water, as the roots can be prone to rot.
  • Feed kalanchoe about once per month during the blooming period.
  • Pinch back or deadhead flowers to encourage more blooms. After deadheading, give the plant a break and reduce watering.
  • Most kalanchoes will re-bloom, usually during shorter days and longer nights, between fall and spring.
  • To propagate the plant, take a leaf cutting and place it into some water until roots form. Then re-plant in soil.

Kalanchoe

Kalanchoes come in a wide range of colors such as this red, single flowering variety of kalanchoe (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana).
Barbara H. Smith, HGIC, Clemson Extension

Kalanchoe (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana) is a popular houseplant typically available for sale during late winter and spring months. It is a durable flowering potted plant requiring very little maintenance in the home or office. It has dark green, thick waxy leaves with scalloped-edges and small, four-petaled flowers in clusters held above the foliage. It is also available in a double flowering variety with as many as 26 petals per bloom. Kalanchoe brightens the indoors with flowers in various shades of red, magenta, pink, orange, yellow and white. It is native to Madagascar and was introduced in 1932 by Robert Blossfeld, a German hybridizer.

Culture

Kalanchoe grows best in full sun and a well-drained potting media. Kalanchoe will tolerate bright indoor light levels well. However, plants tend to get spindly in low light conditions. Kalanchoe can be damaged by over watering. Allow the soil to dry slightly between waterings. Fertilize actively growing plants with any houseplant fertilizer once a month. Ideal temperatures are 45-65 °F at night and 50-70 °F during the day. Cool night temperatures prolong flower life.

This orange flowering variety of kalanchoe (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana) will brighten up the indoors.
Barbara H. Smith, HGIC, Clemson Extension

Reblooming Kalanchoe

With good care, kalanchoes may be grown to rebloom the next season. After flowering, shift the plant to a slightly larger pot. Kalanchoes are succulents that grow best in a well-drained and well- aerated potting soil, such 60% peat moss and 40% perlite. Cut back tall growth and old flower stems. Keep well watered in a sunny, warm window. After danger of frost, move outdoors to a bright, lightly shaded spot for the summer. Gradually adjust them to outdoor conditions, so tender leaves will not burn. Bring back indoors before the first frost or 3 months before desired bloom time.

Kalanchoes, like poinsettias, require short day lengths (long nights) for flower bud development. Natural day lengths between October 1 and March 1 allow flower buds to form. During this time, keep the plant in a room where lights are not turned on during the naturally dark hours or control day length by placing the plant in a closet in late afternoons and then bringing it out to a high light environment each morning. About six weeks of natural winter day lengths are required for flower buds to form. Natural winter day lengths will supply kalanchoe with a 14 to16-hour night period. Temperatures above 80 °F during the long night period can result in a “heat delay”, inhibiting flower development. After the flower buds are large enough to be seen above the foliage, day length is no longer crucial. At this time, place plants in any location regardless of night lighting. Plants exposed to naturally short day lengths in early October should begin flowering by January (i.e. approximately 12 weeks from start of long nights).

The pink, double flowering variety of kalanchoe (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana) may have as many as 26 petals per bloom.
Millie Davenport, HGIC, Clemson Extension

Propagation

Start with clean and sterile containers and rooting media. A 6- to 8-inch plastic pot can be used to root several cuttings. Recycled pots should be washed thoroughly using a household cleaner and disinfectant. A good rooting medium consists of 50% peat moss and 50% perlite. Normally, peat moss and perlite don’t need sterilization when new. Propagate from herbaceous stem cuttings in spring or early summer. Use vegetative shoots not flowering shoots for best rooting. Terminal cuttings for propagation should be two- to three-inches long with two pairs of leaves. Remove the bottom leaves from the cutting. No rooting hormone is needed. Allow the cutting to callus for several days before inserting into the rooting medium. Place the pot indoors in bright, indirect light and in a closed large plastic bag to maintain high levels of humidity. Cuttings should be established enough to transplant in 14 to 21 days.

Problems

In the home, plant diseases are rarely a problem. Too much or too little water and insects are the main problems. Root rot usually results from a soil mix that does not drain quickly or from overly frequent watering. Do not let plants sit in water. For more information, please see HGIC 1459, Indoor Plants – Watering.

Powdery mildew is another possible disease problem for kalanchoe. Powdery mildew can be difficult to recognize on kalanchoe because only fine webbing will develop. Leaves may be mottled and have yellow spotting, dead flecks, line or ring spot patterns. Plants may be stunted and not flower. To prevent powdery mildew allow for plenty of air flow around plant material. Potassium bicarbonate, such as Bonide Remedy, can be used on kalanchoe to help control powdery mildew. For more information, please see HGIC 2251 House Plant Diseases & Disorders.

Mealybugs, aphids and brown scale are the most common insect pests of kalanchoe. Isolate plants that are infested. Control mealybugs by wiping them off with alcohol using a cotton swab. Brown scale can be removed by scraping them off. Aphids can be removed by hand. For more information, please see HGIC 2252, Common Houseplant Insects & Related Pests.

Tips for outside

Do you know the best way to care for your Kalanchoe outdoors? We are happy to share these care tips with you so you can enjoy your Kalanchoe for months and months in your garden or on your balcony.

Can I keep my plants in the same pot outdoors, or will I have to transplant them?
Put your Kalanchoë in a large pot or container along with other Kalanchoës somewhere on the veranda, the patio or in the garden. You could also plant your Kalanchoë in the garden soil but wait to do this until the ground is no longer frozen. To be sure of this, it would be best to wait until the middle of May.

Can I place my Kalanchoë in the sun?
Absolutely! The best location will be one that receives a lot of light. The Kalanchoë will thrive even in direct sunlight.
What does my Kalanchoë need in the way of water and extra fertiliser?
It will produce even more flowers outdoors than indoors. And it doesn’t need a lot of water either: a moderately moist soil is perfect. Giving it a little fertiliser every month will be sufficient.
What should I do with the Kalanchoë’s faded flowers?
The faded flowers do not have to be removed.
It’s nice and warm during the day but it’s still pretty cold at night. What should I do with my Kalanchoës on the patio?
In early spring, bring the plants indoors if it will get down to below 10 degrees at night. Starting in the middle of May, you can be sure that they can just be left outside at night. Just be sure to bring them indoors before the first ground frost so you can simply continue to enjoy them!

Growing Kalanchoes

With the onset of winter, we sometimes need a kick start to get out in the garden. The vibrant shades of the hardy Kalanchoe make them the perfect winter warmer.

Kalanchoes are some of the prettiest bushy succulents around. They belong to the stonecrop (Crassulaceae) family which is the same family as the jade plant or money tree. Kalanchoes are the ultimate winter plant, whether in garden beds or pots.

These glorious plants flower from June through to September; sometimes even longer. Kalanchoe flowers are best described as masses of small bouquets of starry, four petalled flowers that develop at the end of a stalk. The vivid colour of the flowers — hot pink, bright yellow, brilliant orange and intense red make a dramatic statement during the bleak cold of winter. In the past the flowers have only been available in single form but in recent years a double flowering Kalanchoe has been released and is available in all the vibrant colours, hot pink being my favourite.

Kalanchoes have a compact habit and their leaves are oval with scalloped edges. They usually have lush, green foliage but some varieties have grey leaves. The grey-leafed forms can add a lovely contrast to a dull spot in your garden or brighten a boring pot.

Kalanchoes can grow anywhere and are extremely hardy. They don’t mind whether they are in full sun or shade, so they’re perfect for shady balconies or the western side of the house. They don’t mind being left inside while flowering or spending their life outside. They look magnificent mass planted in the garden or as a specimen plant in a pot. They even look fantastic in a hanging basket. These plants will flower and look glorious no matter where they are planted.

Whether you have brown or green thumbs, Kalanchoes are sure to survive at your house. These beauties don’t need much water and would much prefer to be dry than wet. A good watering once or twice a week is all that is needed to keep these plants looking beautiful. They don’t like to sit in water so make sure that potted specimens don’t sit in saucers of water. If planted in the ground, make sure they have good drainage. Planting in a clay pot with Searles Cacti & Succulent Mix can help ensure the roots are aerated. Sometimes roots of kalanchoes in plastic pots will sweat during the warmer months and this can lead to an untimely death.

Apply 5IN1 Organic Plant Food Pellets every three months and feed with Searles Flourish Soluble Fertiliser every two weeks. If by chance insects attack your kalanchoe, trim off the affected foliage and spray with Searles Conguard. Don’t fret though — these plants are tough and should survive with very little attention.

Flowering kalanchoes brighten any cold winter’s day, so get outside and enjoy the colours of summer while wearing your ugg boots!

About The Author

My family owns Trevallan Lifestyle Centre (TLC) an About the Garden Local Garden Expert. Trevallan’s motto is “give your life some TLC” and that’s what I do every day – help people put the TLC (Tender, loving care) back into their life. I love talking to people about stress FREE gardening and often talk at local gardening clubs, women’s groups and social clubs. I write a gardening column for the local paper and gardening magazines (including About the Garden). I also love sourcing beautiful things for the home and body. I try to source things for their beauty and functionality but sometimes decor items have to be a little bit fun too! Enjoy the journey with me and visit my blog trevallan.blogspot.com.au

Tips for indoors

The Kalanchoe comes in many variations and colours and is an ideal indoor plant; for anyone who does not have a green thumb and of course for anyone who does. It is also an amazing plant to mix and match with other varieties of Kalanchoe and with other green or flowering indoor plants. Mix colours and different heights to create your own urban jungle in an instant. In addition, you can put it almost anywhere in the house: it will be more than content even with only a little natural light.

Do you know the best way to care for your Kalanchoe indoors? We are happy to share these care tips with you so you can enjoy your Kalanchoe for months and months!

How much water do I give my Kalanchoe; after all, it is a succulent plant?

Give your Kalanchoe a small amount of water weekly in the summer; in the winter a splash of water is enough every fourteen days. This will ensure that it provides months of enjoyment and blooms.

Should I give my Kalanchoe plant food as well?

Yes, please. Your Kalanchoe will enjoy a small amount of plant nutrition (for succulents) every 2 to 3 weeks added to its water. This will keep it beautiful even longer (especially in the winter).

What is de best temperature for my Kalanchoe?

Room temperature is ideal, but your Kalanchoe will also do excellently at temperatures between 10 °C and 25 °C.

My Kalanchoe has dead flowers; do I pull or cut these off?

For top quality blooms, we recommend that you do not remove the dead flowers of the Kalanchoe, so you can avoid damaging the flower buds. Your Kalanchoe will just keep flowering.

Where is the best spot for my Kalanchoe in my home?

Place your plants preferably on a well-lit spot. The Kalanchoe does well in bright sun, so on a windowsill facing South-west should not be a problem. Make sure you give it enough water there.

Is Kalanchoe edible?

No, the Kalanchoe plant is a decorative plant and is not suitable for consumption. Don’t try this at home or anywhere.

When can I put my Kalanchoe outside?

Once there are no more frosts, and temperatures are above 10 °C, the Kalanchoe can go outside onto terraces, balconies, in the garden and on the patio. We always see All Saints as the time to go outside; so that’s around mid-May. At that stage, you can be sure that the nights are no longer too cold.

Kalanchoe Flowering: How To Make A Kalanchoe Rebloom

I received a Kalanchoe as a gift plant this summer and I am now struggling to get it to bloom anew. Kalanchoe is an African native that has become a common house guest in North American homes. These plants require low light conditions to force budding. Ideally, the plant should experience 14 hours of lightless conditions to promote budding and bloom. Getting Kalanchoe to bloom again requires a bit of a rest period for the plant, correct lighting and some good fertilizer to fuel the process. A few tips on how to make a Kalanchoe rebloom will ensure success and a beautiful flowering houseplant in winter.

Kalanchoe Bloom Time

Usually, the plant is in full bloom at purchase and produces a constant parade of flowers for weeks or even months. Kalanchoes are forced to bloom by nurseries, in order to present their flowers for purchasers. When does Kalanchoe bloom naturally? In its native region, Kalanchoe can bloom almost year around, but as a container houseplant, it is most commonly blooming in late winter to late spring. This cycle will slow down as lighting increases.

Getting a Kalanchoe to bloom again requires a rest period for the plant and

then tricking it into thinking it is a different time of year. Exposure to lower light levels during fall and winter will generally encourage the plant to bloom, but plants in higher light regions will need some closet time to mimic the lower light hours of a winter hibernation.

A hibernation, or rest period, is necessary for the plant to amass energy for blooming and growth when conditions are favorable. Keeping the plant in no light for this period will awaken the plant from its winter slumber and cause flower production. Failing to provide a rest period is often the reason getting Kalanchoe to bloom again may be unsuccessful.

How to Make a Kalanchoe Rebloom

After the flowers on your plant begin to fade and die, cut them back and remove the spent blooms. This prevents the plant from directing energy to trying to sustain a part that is already spent.

During the summer, keep the plant in well-drained soil in a sunny location and maintain a moderate moisture level.

When fall arrives, cut back on water and move the plant indoors if you are in a zone below USDA 9 or where frost is expected. The plant will experience low light conditions from fall to late winter, which normally causes flowers to form.

Fertilize with a 0-10-10 in late winter or just as the first buds are forming. This will promote better and more Kalanchoe flowering and enhance plant health and vigor.

Tricking a Kalanchoe into Blooming

If you want your plant to bloom at a specific time, such as Christmas, you will need to do some planning. Minimize watering and give the plant a 14-hour period without light daily 6 weeks before the desired bloom time. Place the plant in a closet or under a box for 14 hours and provide 10 hours of bright light.

Keep the plant warm and away from drafts. Do not water or feed the plant for 6 weeks, as it is dormant. As soon as you see flower buds, move the plant to brighter lighting and resume watering. Feed the plant in spring and remove spent flowers to encourage new buds.

These plants are easy to grow and provide up to 6 months of beautiful little flowers and thick attractively scalloped leaves.

The kalanchoe is a perennial succulent and a member of the Crassulaceae family. A native of Madagascar, this easy to care for plant has as many as 125 species and is a popular choice for a potted plant or as an addition to the landscape.

About Kalanchoes

Even though kalanchoe plants are technically perennials, often they are treated as a disposable annual that is thrown away after the flowers fade. However, it can be made to bloom again.

Typically, kalanchoe plants bloom summer through fall. The flowers form little clusters similar to tiny bouquets and come in many shades of red, orange, yellow and purple. Its oval shaped leaves are thick, as is standard in succulent plants.

Most often, kalanchoes are grown in pots as a brightly-colored houseplant, but it also can be used as a landscape plant if you live in the right climate. Kalanchoe plants, indoors and outdoors, prefer low humidity, bright light and well drained soil.

Kalanchoe Care

Kalanchoe care is very simple. It is an ideal plant for people who think they have no time to take care of a houseplant. Like a cactus, they need little water and rarely need fertilizer. However, their needs vary slightly depending on if they are inside or outside your home.

Indoor Kalanchoes

If you are growing a kalanchoe as a houseplant it will need bright light for eight to ten hours a day. It should be potted in a light, well-draining potting soil that is about 50 percent perlite.

Watering only needs to be done when your kalanchoe is dry. Just stick your finger into the soil. If it feels moist you do not need to water it just yet. Soggy soil will lead to root-rot and will kill your plant. Fertilizing should also be infrequent with application no more than once a month. If you intend to throw away your kalanchoe after blooming, there is no need to fertilize at all.

If you plan to keep your kalanchoe, you can make it flower again. When the flowers start to fade, cut them off and put your plant in a dark room for about a month. Cut back on watering at this time. When new buds start to form, put it back in a sunny area. Resume normal watering. Soon you will be able to enjoy more lovely flowers.

Outdoor Kalanchoes

Kalanchoes planted outside also need well drained, alkaline soil. If you live in a wet climate you will not have much success with outdoor kalanchoes. The same is true if you live in a cold climate because kalanchoes do not like to get cold. Ideal temperatures are a low of 65 degrees at night and a high of 85 degrees during the day. If your location does not fit this ideal, you can try putting your plants in pots outside and just bring them in when the weather is not cooperative.

If your kalanchoes are planted outside, they should only need to be fertilized once a year with an all-purpose fertilizer. Avoid overcrowding your kalanchoe plants because this can contribute to leafspot if the plants do not have adequate air circulation.

In the southern part of the U.S., kalanchoes can be planted in the fall. Other parts of the country can plant them in late spring after all danger of frost is past. Those who live in coastal areas will appreciate that kalanchoes are salt tolerant and can handle salty air and soil.

Starting New Plants

Kalanchoe plants are fairly easy to start at home. With many species, you will see tiny plants forming along the outer edge of the leaves. When these get large enough, you can carefully remove them and plant them in their own little pot.

Another way to propagate kalanchoes is the take a cutting of about two to three inches long and allow it to dry for 24 hours. Ideally the cutting should have at least two leaves on it; four or five leaves are even better. Then plant one end of the stem in the potting soil. You will not even need a rooting compound to get it started.

Some species of kalanchoe will sprout little off-shoots that can also be potted once they grow large enough. Whichever way you use, starting new kalanchoe plants is very easy.

Potential Problems

Kalanchoes are sometimes susceptible to some common garden pests and problems. The most common are caterpillars, aphids and mealy bugs. Keep in mind that kalanchoes do not respond well to some pesticides. As is usually the case, natural pest control is the best option.

Occasionally, your plants may have disease problems. Leaf spot is most common and due to a lack of proper ventilation. Another possible issue is powdery mildew which is cause by the same reason as leaf spot.

If your plant is in a cool, humid environment you may notice calloused spots on the leaves. While this is not harmful it is also not very attractive. This can be avoided by making sure your plants have the right growing conditions.

You will not often have problems with kalanchoes. With just basic care you can enjoy a beautiful plant that will brighten any home or yard.

Learn about Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi commonly known as Lavender Scallops, and how to care to for it as a houseplant.

My daughter gave me this pretty Kalanchoe pronounced Kal-uhn-KOH-ee, and Haworthia succulent a while back. She is a huge succulent lover. In fact, she even wrote a nice post for me on successful tips and mistakes when growing succulents.

If you have any interest in houseplants then for sure you have seen or maybe even grow Kalanchoe. Typically you will find them everywhere with green leaves and flowers like this pretty pink one shown above. However, this is Kalanchoe blossfeldiana. It’s very common, produces pretty flowers, but the foliage itself is not that special.

The plant my daughter gave me is Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi.

More specifically, Kalanchoe Bryophyllum fedtschenkoi ‘Variegata’.

This post contains some affiliate links (that means if you make a purchase after clicking a link, there’s no additional cost to you, but I will earn a very small commission. ) .

The common name for this plant is Lavender Scallops. This has to do with the lavender scalloped edges on the leaves. Mine has a lot of cream but not a lot of lavender. I’ve read that in bright sunlight the plant produces more lavender color.

Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi Care

  • use well-draining porous soil
  • keep it in bright sunlight – mine is on a windowsill
  • water infrequently – no more than once a week – the soil should look & feel dry
  • prune leggy branches as needed

One of the interesting things about this plant is the way it creates plantlets on the edges of each leaf. This leaf fell off the plant and started producing babies. I set it in this concrete mini planter with some Echeveria and it has taken root.

Here’s a closeup view of the plantlets.

Note: Kalanchoe plants are listed as toxic like so many houseplants, though while researching the toxicity of Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi I found many articles that say it’s not toxic. However, it’s always best to be on the safe side, so keep it out of reach from pets and small children. If you have any concerns call your local poison control center.

This pretty succulent does flower, however, mine has yet to do so. From what I’ve read the flowers are fairly insignificant.

For me, it’s perfectly fine because the foliage is oh so pretty.

Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi growing succulent subshrub of the genus Bryophyllum also known as Bryophyllum fedtschenkoi, Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi perennial evergreen used as ornamental ground cover drought tolerant plant, can grow in desert, subtropics, mediterranean climate and growing in hardiness zone 10-12.

Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi leaves

Leaves color green some variety red or white in the edge of the leaves, leaf round shape and sometimes lobed in the margin.

Flower color red the flowers in bell shape the flowers grow on stems in clusters.

Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi for sale – Seeds or Plants to Buy

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Kalanchoe fedtschenkoiKalanchoe fedtschenkoi plantKalanchoe fedtschenkoi plant careGrowing Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi plant

How to grow Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi growing and care:

Drained soil

What is the best way to start growing?
Plant / Seed / Vegetative Reproduction

Is it necessary to graft or use vegetative reproduction?
Yes, because to get specific verity

Difficulties or problems when growing:
?

Planting season:
Spring / Summer / Autumn

Pests and diseases:
Snails, slugs

Pruning season:
All year

How to prune:
Dead parts

Size of the plant?
30-50 cm, 12-20 inches

Growth speed in optimal condition:
Slow growing

Water requirement:
Small amount of water

Light conditions in optimal condition for growing:
Full Sun / Half Shade

Is it possible to grow as houseplant?
No

Growing is also possible in a planter /flowerpot / containers:
Yes

Blooming information

Bloom season:
Winter / Spring

General information about the flower
Red bell flowers that grow on stems in clusters

Scientific name:

Bryophyllum fedtschenkoi

Blooming Seasons

  • Spring flowers
  • Winter flowers

Flower Colors

  • Red flower

Climate

  • Desert Climate
  • Mediterranean Climate
  • Subtropics Climate

Leaf color

  • Red leaves

Ornamental parts

  • Ornamental flower
  • Ornamental leaves
  • Ornamental plant

Plant growing speed

  • Slow growing plants

Plant life-form

  • Evergreen
  • Perennial plant
  • Subshrub
  • Succulent

Plant uses

  • Colored leaves
  • Drought tolerant plants
  • Ground cover plants
  • Ornamental plants

Planting season

  • Autumn Planting
  • Spring Planting
  • Summer planting

Plants sun exposure

  • Full sun Plants
  • Part shade Plants

Watering plants

  • Regularly water
  • Small amounts of water

Hardiness zone

  • Hardiness zone 10
  • Hardiness zone 11
  • Hardiness zone 12

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