Tips for Care - Adenium (Desert Rose)
Also known as desert rose because of the rose-like flower, Adenium is a succulent native to the semi-arid regions of Arabia and the eastern and western parts of Africa. Adenium is a type of caudiciform or “fat plant” due to its thick bulbous base. The shape of the plant, thick roots, and smaller leaves makes it a good bonsai plant. It is an easy to care plant with a minimum water requirement.
Potting- Needs well-drained pot. For potting mix - 50% coarse sand (bajri) to be mixed in 25% garden soil & 25% manure & vermicompost mix. Another alternate is to use cocopeat (40%), perlite (20%), vermiculite(20%) and vermicompost (20%). Can add 1-2 fistfuls of bone meal. Vine/Chalk powder mix will also help. There is a tendency of ants to prosper in the soil due to root sap; hence repotting once a year is useful. Potash gives good growth and pest control. Use ½ spoon potash around the root. Should mix fungicide like neem khali during repotting.
Watering Requirement – Water to be given every two days during summer and every seven days during winter, the fat bulbous trunk stores water, allowing the soil to dry out before watering. Do not allow roots to become waterlogged. It is a drought-tolerant plant. If the soil becomes excessively dry, the plant goes dormant; once you give it a little water, it quickly wakes up and starts growing again.
Light Requirement – Desert rose succulents like bright light, so a southern window exposure provides enough sun for the plants to flourish and bloom. In the garden, choose a sunny location that has some protection from the afternoon sun, as it can scorch the foliage.
Propagation – The best way to propagate a desert rose is from seeds, but this is rarely possible for an indoor plant. You can try using stem cuttings.
Fertilization – Fertilizers should be lower in nitrogen and higher in phosphorous (NPK - 10/20/10). Feed monthly from late spring until early fall. Always dilute the fertilizer to half the recommended strength. During winters little bit of liquid fertilizer can be given for survival.
General Tips - Adenium flowers during summers. During winters, it goes into hibernation. It can be planted around September to November & repotted around February for good flowering.
Maximum reachable height: Up to 4 feet
Common name(s): Adenium, Desert Rose
Bloom Time: Spring, Summer, Early Monsoon