Haworthia is a succulent belonging to the family of gold-headed plants. It can be purchased in several varieties. In this post, I would like to take a look at a few of them and discuss how to care for haworthia, how to water it and how to replant it.
Havorsia comes from South Africa and guests in our homes are more and more often. It owes its name to the botanist Adrian Hardy Haworth.
This small succulent enchants its owners with the wonderful shape of its leaves, the appearance of which is unique in our climate zone. Unlike most plants we see from childhood, haworthia resembles a flower that constantly opens like a bud of green leaves.
This wonderful plant does very well at home, is easy to grow and blooms quite often in various conditions.
But as I mentioned earlier, it is not the flowers that delight haworthia lovers, but the wonderful leaves.
Well, we are starting the journey towards exploring haworthia ?
Havorsia is a wonderful succulent that has very attractive rosette-shaped leaves.
In general, haworthias are quite easy to maintain. They need a bright place, well-drained soil and rare but plentiful watering.
If you follow the same treatments as in the case of aloe vera or echeveria, you will surely enjoy this wonderful plant.
|Sizes||Mature plants can reach a size of 20 cm, but it depends on the specific species|
|The best place||Partly sunlit. Of course.|
|Soil||Permeable. Preferably sandy|
|Toxicity||Generally non-toxic to animals and humans|
The history of haworthia is quite interesting. Around 1700, haworthia was grouped like a variety of aloe. The name Havorsia was first used in 1809 by Henry Auguste Duval in honour of the English botanist Adrian Hardy Haworth.
In 1976, MBBayer ‘s Haworthia handbook was published, which culminated in 7 years of work and described 67 species of haworthia that were studied in one geographic region.
The next edition of this book, published in 1982 under the title “New Haworthia Handbook”, contained 68 species of haworthia that were recognized and described.
Varieties of Haworthia
As I mentioned earlier, haworthia comes in several varieties that can be obtained.
One of the most popular is the haworthia fasciata, which you can buy in virtually any garden store. It fits very nicely with all minimalist interiors.
Apart from the haworthia fasciata, you can also quite often meet haworthia cooperi, which is one of my favourite succulents. From what I have read in books on succulents, we call about 42 species in total.
One entry is not enough to cover all of them, and there is no such need. Instead, I’ll show you a few of the types of haworthia that I like the most.
Scientific name: Haworthia fasciata
Haworthia fasciata, like Echeveria, is quite easy to grow and, like most succulents, it does not require any special treatment to keep it alive.
It has distinctive green leaves with white stripes, which is why it is sometimes called a “zebra plant”.
Haworthia fasciata is the perfect succulent for beginner lovers of this species. It does not require any special treatments, but you must remember that the haworthia roots never stand in the water.
Like most succulents, it is very sensitive to excess water and by watering it too often you can make the roots rot. If this process begins it is very difficult to reverse it, so always check that the soil is dry before watering.
Haworthia fasciata can be planted in virtually any pot, as long as it has drainage holes.
My favourite spot for this haworthia is the white ceramic pot, which looks great in combination with the white stripes on the haworthia leaves.
But not only the “fasciata” is beautiful ?
Haworthia cooperi is my favourite variety.
It has wonderful leaves through which the sun’s rays pass. It makes an amazing impression and I hope the photo above shows this great effect.
The leaves of the haworthia cooperi grow in the shape of a rosette and grow out of the interior to form something like a green flower.
I have to admit it was the first succulent plant that I bought at a garden store.
And it was love at first sight ?
I love these wonderful thick leaves through which the sun’s rays partially pass.
She is standing in my kitchen by the window and I look at her every morning. I have transplanted it a few times now and she has thanked me wonderfully with the wonderful shots that gave rise to new plants.
I like the haworthia cooperi that tells me when to water it. Due to the appearance of the leaves, I can very easily see when it is starting to use up the water it stores. The leaves of the cooperi haworthia then become wrinkled and look as if the juice has been squeezed out of them.
One plentiful watering is enough and the haworthia cooperi comes back to life and looks like new again.
I recommend it, especially to beginner succulent lovers.
Haworthia cooperi looks very interesting not only in a pot but also in natural conditions. Then it grows rooted in dry grass and only sometimes does it fully open up to the world.
In Africa, haworthia cooperi can often be found in the shade of stones that protect it from the sun.
As for its size, it grows to about 5 cm, but the size does not matter much. For me, she is great as she is.
Haworthia Cooperi likes bright rooms but doesn’t like direct rays of light, so you need to choose the right place for it.
A window sill with a window facing west or east will work well, where it will be directly lit for a limited time. three to four hours.
This variety of haworthia grows very well in homes and apartments. As for the ambient temperature for this variety, it will even withstand temperatures lower than 10 degrees C, but it is better not to risk storing it in places with such a temperature.
At a temperature below four degrees Celsius, the leaves will be damaged, which is worth remembering when transporting or ordering plants with courier delivery.
You can find many companies on the internet that offer succulents with delivery by mail, but let’s be reasonable when it comes to ordering. Winter is not the best time to transport such plants.
Scientific name: Haworthia attenuata
This variety of haworthia has a slightly different shape than the two previous succulents I described.
It resembles haworthia fasciata in that it has similar leaves with white stripes, with the difference, however, that narrow-leaved haworthia has more elongated leaves.
They look a bit stretched.
Unfortunately, I do not have this specimen at home, so I can not put a photo here, but I “hunt” for it and as soon as I buy it, I will update this article immediately ?
I know that these few species of haworthia are not everything, but for me, they are the most important. Maybe in the next articles, I will discuss the next varieties and there are quite a lot of them.
Now, however, let’s see how to grow haworthia at home.
How to grow Haworthia ?
Haworthia in cultivation does not require any special treatments to keep it in great shape.
When looking for a place for haworthia, you can choose a south-facing, well-lit window, provided you have curtains to diffuse the sun’s rays. Havorsia loves a lot of light but should not be exposed to direct sunlight for too long.
You can start growing with one plant, which will sprout new branches over time. Then will be the best time to replant the haworthia and replant new strains into new pots.
This way you can start your haworthia plantation ?
Havorsia is not one of the most demanding succulents. It can be easily kept in great shape if you take care of a few basic elements:
- place – lit at the right temperature
- permeable soil (suitable mixture)
- a suitable pot with drainage
- watering only when the soil is completely dry
if you provide these haworthia conditions, you will enjoy the wonderful flowers that you can see in one of my photos in this article. The sharpness may not be perfect, but you can see this cute flower, which grew on the protruding shoot ?
I love it …
How to care for Haworthia ?
In the previous post, I wrote about how to take care of aloe vera and I must admit that in the case of haworthia, you should pay attention to the same things.
Taking care of your haworthia, you must pay attention to what conditions you provide for its proper growth.
All plants need the right conditions for their species and there is no one method for different species.
Havorsia is no exception, so pay attention to the following.
Take care of the right amount of light
Growing haworthia is fairly easy, as long as you remember that haworthias are succulents.
The stereotypical image of succulents is in the middle of the desert, full sun, 40 degrees in the shade and one cactus standing unmoved for decades ?
Unfortunately, in the case of most small succulents such as haworthia, such conditions will kill the plant faster than you might think.
Large cacti are much easier to withstand such difficult conditions, if only because of the amount of water that is stored inside them.
Havorsia, like other small succulents, does not tolerate long, direct sunlight. In many books, you can see haworthia in the boulder stream, which probably contributed to the fact that this plant tolerates weaker sunlight much better than other succulents.
Haworthias do very well in greenhouses and conservatories, but not everyone has access to them. If you are one of the lucky ones, remember not to leave it in direct sunlight for too long. A few hours a day is more than enough.
Some types of haworthia can survive a few degrees of frost for a short time, but it’s better not to risk it.
Haworthia feels best at temperatures between 25-32 degrees C. These are temperatures a few degrees higher than most houses have. On the other hand, Haworthia quickly adapts to harsh conditions, so they should cope with it.
If you plan to transport, make sure that the haworthia is properly packed, because even a blast of cold air can damage the leaves, which will almost immediately change colour and wither.
How to water haworthia?
While growing, water the haworthia thoroughly and patiently wait for the next watering until the soil is dry.
If you’re wondering when is the best time to water haworthia, it’s best to touch the ground with your finger. If you feel the ground is damp, you have to wait.
The soil should be completely dry when watering.
Remember that succulents come mainly from Africa and live there in conditions without a lot of water. Therefore, they store water in their leaves. That’s why they are so cute.
What soil for haworthia?
Before transplanting, pay attention to which soil is best for haworthia.
It should be well-permeable, i.e. have a lot of inorganic elements such as polystyrene, crushed brick, expanded clay, etc.
By using such a mixture of soil you will provide haworthia with conditions similar to natural and even if you pour too much water, it will simply fly through the ground.
You can buy a ready-made mix for cacti and succulent plants, but in my experience, I know that such soil is too compact and holds too much moisture.
It is good for young plants that are helped by the high fertilizer content, but I strongly advise against using ready-made mixtures for older succulents.
By the older ones, I mean several years of haworthia that require replanting from the pots in which they were bought in the store.
Havorsia reproduction is not complicated.
First, you need to wait for the haworthia to sprout.
Then, when the soil is dry enough, gently remove the haworthia from the pot and loosen the soil.
It will be quite dense, so it should be done very gently so as not to damage the roots.
In the photo above you can see what the haworthia fasciata looks like when transplanting. After taking out and loosening the soil, gently tear the regrowth from the base of the haworthia.
It requires a bit of practice, but if the soil is well loosened and the roots are not damaged, the haworthia should take on.
More details on how to breed haworthia can be found in my next post.
How to root Haworthia ?
Some plants, such as the thujas, require rooting to take root. This is because we reproduce them by tearing off the twig, which we place in the rooting device.
I mean a specialized chemical such as Rhizopon or another with a similar composition or effect.
So far I have never used rooting for breeding haworthia or other succulents, but if you decide to use it, be sure to check its intended use. On the market, there are not only liquid or lose rotters, but also those intended for specific plant species.
If you are in doubt as to whether a given rooting agent is suitable for your haworthia, consult your local gardening retailer. As a rule, such people have more practical experience than the Castorama sellers.
And once you have propagated your haworthia, you will enjoy your cuttings.
Haworthia – seedlings at home
When you replant your haworthia, you will enjoy wonderful seedlings that must be properly cared for.
Remember to water it regularly and put it in the sun. You can water with the sprinkler and this is the only moment when it is useful for watering succulents. I advise against using it for larger plants because when spraying the plant, we pour water on the leaves, which can cause leaf diseases.
Also take care of fertilization, which is so important in the initial stage of plant growth.
If a ready-made mixture of soil for cacti and succulents has been used, it is usually already filled with fertilizer, so take it into account when calculating the fertilizer dosage.
The most common diseases
Havorsia belongs to the succulents that are quite resistant to most of the diseases that affect other houseplants.
The most common problem is rotting roots. This disease is caused by too abundant watering, so it is important to properly dose the water.
The problem with the roots can also be caused by soil and fertilizers, so they should be used in moderation. I use doses lower than given by the producers because succulents are used in sterile conditions. They will cope with it ?
Another problem that is encountered even in apartments is mealybugs. These small plant pests are sometimes difficult to control. Various chemicals, that can be bought in garden shops, will be useful to fight them.
It should be used as intended, observing how the plant reacts, because some chemicals may contain substances unfavourable for this species.
It’s best to ask someone at a garden store.
Haworthia and aloe – differences and similarities
Havorsia and aloe are often confused with each other.
And no wonder, because both species come in so many varieties that it’s easy to get lost in it all.
If you do not know exactly what to look for, it can be very difficult to distinguish some representatives of the two species.
The similarities of haworthia and aloe are as follows:
- depending on the type, they come in very similar colors, i.e. both havorsia and aloe have green leaves without patterns
- have similar patterns, i.e. stripes or marble
- both species have a habit of changing color when exposed to stressful conditions, i.e. leaves may turn yellow and even brown like aloe vera
- both havorsia and aloe like exactly the same conditions, i.e. bright rooms and rare but abundant watering of succulents
- both are easy to grow
As for the differences between these species, they are quite significant.
Havorsia is much smaller than aloe. The differences in size can be quite large even in the case of plants grown at home.
Aloe is more extensive and haworthia is more compact in a characteristic rosette.
2. Flowers of Haworthia and Aloe
This method of distinguishing haworthia from aloe vera is patient but leaves no doubt.
The haworthia flowers are quite small and always bloom white. Depending on the type of haworthia, sometimes the flower has small brown or green stripes, but they are almost imperceptible. They have an elongated shape with wide, open ends.
In the photo below you can see the cooperi haworthia flower that bloomed on my windowsill last year. Sorry for the blurry photo, but my phone did not work with the autofocus ?
3. Cloves on the leaves
This is perhaps the best way to tell the difference between haworthia and aloe.
If the cloves are not visible at first glance, you can gently run your finger along the edge of the leaf. If you can feel soft teeth, you have Aloe Vera in front of you.
The spines are not as sharp as on cacti, but they can be felt under the fingers.
Haworthia has no cloves along the edge of the leaves and if you slide your finger you can only feel the smooth surface.
There are aloe species that do not have serrated edges but are easily recognizable because of their size.
Haworthia and the cat – is it poisonous?
I honestly admit that I have never had a problem answering this question because I do not have a cat ?
I was able to find on the Internet that haworthia is not toxic to cats. The situation is different with aloe, which is toxic to them, so you must make sure before buying which species you are dealing with.
Haworthia in the garden
Havorsia in the garden will be a great addition to the compositions you have in front of the house. However, you should always remember to use the right soil. Well-drained will allow the haworthia to grow and will prevent problems with stagnant water.
Also, pay attention to the place you choose in the garden for haworthia. It should be a bright place, but not sunny all day long. The places where, after a few hours of intense sun, the shadow cast by the gazebo or the house appear.
The only thing that always worries me about cultivating haworthia in my garden in summer is pests. I always have a problem with spider mites and have been fighting them for years. It is up to you to decide whether to cultivate haworthia in the garden.
It will look beautiful ?
This is where I end today’s entry about haworthia.
I showed you haworthia fasciata, cooperi and how to care for this wonderful plant.
Watering succulents is now a pleasure, as is preparing your soil for haworthia.
As always, please share my post if it was helpful and interesting for you.
I love succulents and I hope that we will be united by our love for these wonderful plants.
Bayer, MB (1971) Changes in the genus Haworthia. Cactus and Succulent Journal (US)
Field Guide to Succulents of Southern Africa, Author: Gideon Smith
The Aloineae: A Biosystematic Survey, Authors Herbert Parkes Riley, Shyamal K. Majumdar
Sources from the web:
http: // pza.sanbi.org/haworthiopsis