Echinocereus Coccineus of the Crassulaceae family will give your home garden a vintage jungle look. The vivid flowers of this plant will brighten any space where you place it. If you are looking for something different yet appealing, the Echinocereus Coccineus could be what you need.
This article is a comprehensive compilation of expert ideas on caring for and propagating this special echeveria genus plant.
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- What Is an Echinocereus Coccineus?
- Echinocereus Coccineus Care
- Features of the Echinocereus Coccineus
What Is an Echinocereus Coccineus?
The Echinocereus Coccineus is one of the 70 cacti species under the Echinocereus genus, commonly referred to as the scarlet hedgehog cactus due to its appearance that imitates the hedgehog animal. The stem of the Echinocereus Coccineus is covered by spines that are brown in color.
Echinocereus Coccineus Care
Taking proper care of the scarlet hedgehog cactus enhances the beauty of the plant, allowing it to showcase its gorgeous properties. The care needs of the plant are not complicated, but negligence can easily rob the plant of its unique beauty. This section explores how best you can take care of the Echinocereus Coccineus plant.
The Echinocereus Coccineus is very sensitive to watering methods and patterns like any other succulent. Therefore, you should be careful to water your plant the right way. There should never be a time when your scarlet hedgehog cactus sits in the water after a watering session. To avoid this scenario, never give your plant excess water.
When you water your plant, do so thoroughly and allow any excess water to drain off the pot through the drainage holes. Lave the soil of your plant to dry out completely before you can soak the plant again.
Mistakes to Avoid
Most plant caregivers make three main mistakes when they water these succulents, and you should avoid them at all costs. First, some use pots that do not have drainage holes, and this causes the plant to sit in water when you give it a drink.
Second, some use the wrong potting mix that does not drain well, which also supports waterlogging conditions around the plant. Third, instead of thoroughly soaking the plant in water, some would use a water bottle to dazzle it, which is not a great idea.
Light is one of the strong requirements for the proper growth of Echinocereus Coccineus. The plant thrives best when you provide it with either full sun or partial shade. For this reason, the scarlet hedgehog cactus will grow better outdoors where its access to light is less limited.
When preparing the potting mix for your Echinocereus succulent, be sure to use the right ratios. For a well-draining potting mix, combine well-draining soil, sand, and perlite at ratios of 2:2:1.
Depending on your preference, you can replace perlite with pumice as both of them give your potting mix structure that allows for good drainage and aeration. With this type of potting mix, you are guaranteed that your Echinocereus Coccineus will grow stronger and healthier.
Warmer climates are more favorable for the healthy survival of the scarlet hedgehog cactus. However, the plant can still survive in temperatures around 20 F. If your climate is much colder, rowing your plant indoors is the best option to keep it warmer.
Adding fertilizer to your scarlet hedgehog cactus is not a must, but your plant would still appreciate some additional food if you choose to give it. If you decide to fertilize your plant, use a liquid cactus fertilizer during the summer.
Avoid fertilizing your plant during all the other seasons of the year. Use the instructions that are on the label of the fertilizer pack to prepare your fertilizer.
You do not need to frequently repot your Echinocereus Coccineus. Of course, you should repot it when you receive it from the store for the first time. This is crucial as a precautionary measure to deal with pests, pathogens, and diseases.
Make sure the soil into which you repot your plant is well-disinfected and disease-free. Your gloves should be on as you handle your plant. Also, be conscious to spray 70 percent isopropyl alcohol on the new pot that you will use before adding the potting mix.
If you want to propagate Echinocereus Coccineus, you can do this through seeds or offsets. Here are the details of how you can carry out the propagation procedure:
– Propagation Through Offsets
The mother plant of the scarlet hedgehog cactus produces offsets, though this might take a long time, even up to many years. To begin the propagating procedure, get a sharp knife and spray it with 70 percent alcohol to prevent microbial contamination on both the mother plant and the offsets. Use this knife to cut the offsets off the mother plant.
Shake off any extra soil from the offsets. Place the offset on a flat surface and leave until it callouses. Plant the offset into a new pot with a fresh potting mix and water it lightly. Allow the soil to completely dry before each watering session.
– Propagation Through Seeds
The Echinocereus Coccineus is a sow-grower. Therefore, propagating this plant from seeds is a long process, which is why we do not recommend it. However, to use this method, prepare your well-draining potting mix. Now, plant the Echinocereus Coccineus seeds in that potting soil.
Water the seeds constantly until they germinate. Allow the shoots to grow more to develop stronger roots before transplanting them into their new pots. Propagation of the scarlet hedgehog cactus by seeds can be done indoors and outdoors.
As long as you provide your Echinocereus Coccineus with the proper conditions that are necessary for its growth, you are unlikely to face challenges caring for the plant. However, discrepancies in watering, soil, light, and temperature conditions can make your plant vulnerable to some pests and diseases.
The most probable pests that you might find on your hedgehog cactus plants are mealybugs and soft scale. Both pests are hideous, and so their presence can go unnoticed if you don’t thoroughly check for them regularly.
Mealybugs appear like cotton wool patches on the parts of your succulents. The soft scales look like mere harmless scales that are tightly attached to the stems and leaves of your Echinocereus Coccineus.
Both the soft scale and mealybugs are sap-sucking pests. Although their presence might not seem to affect your plant much, at first sight, your hedgehog succulent would be dying from the inside. This is usually evident in the long run as the infestations of the pests become larger.
Try by all means to wash your plant with a strong stream of water using a garden hose when the infestations are still low.
Dabbing the pests using 70 percent alcohol is also a viable option when the pests are still in low numbers. Alcohol disrupts the coat that covers the pests, making them easier to kill.
You can also use Neem oil, which blocks the breathing spaces of the pests, leaving them with no other option than to die. Insecticidal soaps are also very effective against mealybugs and scale.
Echinocereus Coccineus is susceptible to fungal infections when you overwater the plant. Fungal infections are usually difficult to deal with. However, if you notice the infection at an early stage, a fungicide might help.
If the damage by the fungal infection is already severe, find a healthy part of the plant so that you can use it to propagate new plants. Please sterilize the equipment that you use for preparing cuttings for propagation to ensure that the new plants are not infected, too.
Also, ensure that the potting mix is sterile. Don’t forget to isolate the infected Echinocereus Coccineus plant to protect the rest of the plants in your home garden.
Features of the Echinocereus Coccineus
This plant is commonly referred to as the scarlet hedgehog cactus due to its appearance which imitates the hedgehog animal.
The stem of the Echinocereus Coccineus is covered by spines that are brown in color.
The Echinocereus Coccineus produces its vivid bloom during the spring. The gorgeous hedgehog cactus flower has colors that range from light to dark red, and they can never pass unnoticed.
If you are growing your scarlet hedgehog cactus as a houseplant, a nice pot will complement the plant’s beauty.
Echinocereus Coccineus can grow up to 12 inches in height and about two inches in diameter. Please note that you can also grow the this plant outdoors.
Does Echinocereus Coccineus do well with a slow-release fertilizer?
Echinocereus coccineus benefits from slow-release fertilizer, providing sustained nutrients for healthy growth and blooming.
How often do you water Echinocereus Coccineus?
Echinocereus coccineus requires infrequent watering, typically every 2-3 weeks, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings.
Is Echinocereus Coccineus slow growing?
Echinocereus coccineus is a slow-growing cactus, developing gradually over time, which adds to its unique charm and long-term appeal.
Congratulations for getting to the end of this article and more for attaining much more knowledge on the care and propagation requirements of Echinocereus Coccineus. Please see the summary of all that you learned in this article below:
- The Echinocereus Coccineus requires full sun or partial shade for growth, which is why it thrives better outdoors than as houseplants.
- A well-draining mix with soil, sand, and perlite at a ratio of 2:2:1 is recommended.
- The scarlet hedgehog cactus prefers warm conditions for better growth.
- You can add liquid cactus fertilizer in summer but never in any other season.
- Frequent repotting is not necessary because the Echinocereus Coccineus is a slow grower.
- Propagation of the plant can be done through offsets or seeds.
- Always check your plant for mealybugs, soft scales, and fungal infections.
The ball is now in your court. Make haste and start applying what you now know while it’s still vivid. You got this!