Botanical Name — Kalanchoe romobopilosa
Common Name — Pies from Heaven
Plant Family — Crassulaceae
Kalanchoe rhombopilosa is native to Southwestern Madagascar. It is one of the smaller growing species of the genus, growing to about 12 inches in height. It grows in dry bushy areas usually in shaded places. The stems are silvery grey in color with brown streaks or polka dots. The leaves are triangularly shaped like a slice of pie hence the common name. The outside edge of the leaf is crinkled like an edge of a pie crust. The plant grows upright with leaves branching up the stem.
- Kalanchoe romobopilosa plants do best in bright sunny locations, at least 4 hours a day. Can do well in part shade. Avoid intense afternoon sun from a south facing window. Leaf tips can burn from too much direct sun in the summer months.
- These plants prefer warm temperatures and low humidity. They will thrive in temperatures above 70 ºF. Minimum winter temperature at 40 F.
- It needs moderate watering in autumn and spring. In summer, your kalanchoe should be watered thoroughly and allowed to dry before watering again. In winter give only occasional watering, enough so the plant does not shrivel.
- These plants prefer a sandy, sharply draining mix. Cacti or succulent potting mix is great. You can amend a regular potting soil with sand or pumice up to 50% to improve grittiness and drainage.
- The roots are fibrous and shallow.
- The flowers are tiny and a greenish yellow with red lines. These bloom on long stalks.
- Can fertilize once a month during the spring and summer with an organic cactus/succulent fertilizer.
- Kalanchoe romobopilosa can be easily propagated by a single leaf. Place a healthy leaf on top of the soil and watch it grow roots. Can plant in soil when the leaf has roots.
- Root rot can also be a concern and is triggered by overwatering. Always err on the side of underwatering.
- Though this plant is low maintenance, it is always wise to keep an eye out for any bugs like mealy bugs and scale or spotting caused by powdery mildew. To help prevent any issues, prune away unhealthy leaves or stems.
Maintenance (pruning, legginess, repotting)
- Pruning the growing tips will encourage more branching for a fuller look.
- Repot your Kalanchoe romobopilosa every two to three years to refresh the soil. Be careful when repotting because these plants can easily snap.
- Kalanchoe are not poisonous to humans but they are poisonous to pets. If your pet ingests it can cause them to experience vomiting and diarrhea. In rare cases, your pet may experience an abnormal heart rhythm.