Aeonium arboreum: Care and Propagation Guide
The Aeonium arboreum is a shrub-like succulent plant that can grow up as tall as 2 meters or 78 inches in height. This plant is usually upright and grows leaves that clump together to form a flat rosette.
The leaves are usually tapering at their tips while their base is slightly flatter, resembling a wedge. These leaves are quite waxy and glossy with green, purple and red colors.
The plant further blooms in winter and spring once it becomes mature. These flowers are usually yellow in color and grow close together to form a pyramid.
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How To Care For Aeonium arboreum
Aeonium arboreum, which is cultivated as houseplants, requires a bright location with a lot of direct sunlight all year round. If the light conditions are not sufficient, the leaves grow deformed and elongated and die. A sunny and warm location on a south window is best.
Aeonium arboreum is to be watered moderately. The roots of the succulents must only be kept slightly moist. Before watering again, make sure that the top 1 to 2 cm of the soil is dry. Overall, it is better to water this plant too little than too often.
Aeonium arboreum likes to be watered very sparingly during the rest period. This succulent needs to be given just enough water that the soil does not completely dry out.
Like any other succulents, Aeonium arboreum does not tolerate waterlogging. Excess water must be able to drain freely or be poured out of the planter after watering because wetness quickly leads to root rot in these succulents.
Rainwater is cheaper for the Aeonium arboreum, but this succulent also loves ordinary tap water that is not too calcareous.
The ideal soil for Aeonium arboreum is a substrate mixture of nutrient-poor soil and mineral components. A substrate for succulents should be well permeable to water so that no water can accumulate after watering. This can be achieved by mixing 60% succulent soil (also called cactus soil) and 40% mineral components, such as gravel or perlite, lava rocks and some quartz sand.
The open-pored mineral components, perlites and granules support the airflow of the substrate. They store the nutrients and moisture but allow excess water to flow quickly after watering.
Aeonium arboreum thrives well in warm temperatures between 18°C and 23°C. During the winter period, these succulents prefer temperatures around 12°C and as much direct sunlight as possible. Temperatures below 10°C are not tolerated by Aeonium arboreum.
Fertilize Aeonium arboreum with a weak solution of succulent fertilizer every four weeks during the growth phase. Do not fertilize during the rest period.
How to Propagate Aeonium arboreum
The branching Aeonium arboreum can be propagated by cuttings. At the beginning of the growing period, cut off 3 to 4 cm long shoots, let them dry for two to three days and then place the cuttings in moistened succulent soil.
For faster rooting, it is possible to dip the cuttings into a rooting hormone beforehand, but this is not necessary. The freshly inserted cuttings of the Aeonium arboreum are to be placed in a bright but not completely sunny place until successful rooting and watered just enough that the soil remains a little moist.
After three to four weeks, the first roots should have formed. After about 6 weeks, the young plants can be put in a partially sunny to fully sunny location and then the plants can be maintained like full-grown specimens.
Aeonium arboreum propagation is possible through leaves as well. Leaf cuttings are obtained from a single leaf that is plucked or cut as deep as possible from the rosette.
With leaf cuttings, a completely new plant grows from the leaf. If this is about one centimeter in size, it can be placed in a special substrate for succulents. Until the following summer, the young plant should not be exposed to the blazing midday sun.