Mother of millions plant of the Crassulaceae family is a succulent with elongated and plump leaves lined by tiny plantlets. It is also known as the Chandelier plant because its circularly arranged leaves closely resemble one.
It would be best if you took only a little time out of your daily schedule to take care of this low-maintenance Kalanchoe genus plant and grow it fully. We have compiled this plant care guide by taking tips from succulent experts worldwide.
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- Mother Of Millions of Plants Care
- Water Requirements
- Light Requirements
- Soil Requirements
- Temperature Requirements
- Humidity Requirements
- Fertilizing Requirements
Mother Of Millions of Plants Care
This is one of the easiest succulents to grow as it needs only partial bright light and warm temperatures daily. Water it only after you have confirmed that the soil has dried a few inches from the top.
Kalanchoe is a succulent that stores water in its roots, stems, and leaves. It is not a plant that likes or can tolerate being overwatered. You can only water it once its soil dries several inches from the top.
We here are huge fans of using moisture meters before watering each time. You must put the moisture meter sensor three to four inches deep into the soil. If the reading comes out two or less than two, go ahead with watering; otherwise, wait one more day.
Make sure that the drainage holes at the bottom of the container are sufficient and keep watering only as long as it takes for it to start draining. Collect the extra water in a saucer and remove it from under the pot within five minutes.
All of these habits will make sure that you do not accidentally end up overwatering your plant. Kalanchoe likes to be watered using rainwater the most. If you have time, collect rainwater every time it rains and then use it for this plant.
During summertime, put this plant somewhere it can receive partial or filtered sunlight for four to six hours straight. The hot summer weather and intense sunlight can often combine to cause leaf edges to turn brown. Hence, we prefer to put this Kalanchoe under another tree or plant during this time.
In winter, the plant can tolerate direct light all day long and, in fact, likes it. Move it indoors and place it near the southern-facing window, which receives the most intense sunlight. An eastern-facing window also receives direct sunlight in the mornings and enough indirect light for the rest of the day to keep this plant going.
Buy full-spectrum artificial grow lights and install them in a light fixture above this plant. You may have to keep these lights on for eight to nine hours daily, but if you are worried about electricity bills, go for LED-based lights instead of fluorescent ones. LEDs are also cheaper.
The good news is that this plant will grow anywhere. However, that is no reason not to do your best regarding its soil requirements.
To make sure overwatering does not occur, make sure that the soil you mix has excellent drainage capabilities. A commercial potting mix for cacti and succulents are a good choice for this plant. You can also make an improved potting soil by mixing an equal amount of perlite, sand, and cactus.
The pot size and material is something to keep in consideration as well. Kalanchoe grows better in clay pots as compared to plastic or metal ones. The pot size should correspond closely to the root ball and be neither too large nor too small.
A range of 60 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature range for the Mother of millions plant. If temperatures exceed 95 degrees during the heat of summer, move it under more shade and water frequently.
Low temperatures harm this plant and can lead to leaf drops. It stops growing at temperatures below 50 degrees, and it might not be easy to bring it back to life. Your poor plant is as good as dead at this point.
That is why you must bring it indoors during the fall and winter. Under conditions of a controlled warm environment, this plant will carry on growing just like in the summer, albeit at a bit slower pace.
You do not need to worry much about humidity when growing this plant. Succulents technically do well even when humidity levels are as low as 20 percent.
High humidity levels can cause their water-soaked leaves to become rotten. If humidity levels in your house are more than 35 percent, then you must ensure that the air circulation around kalanchoe leaves is top-notch.
Just one feeding of a good organic fertilizer during the spring and summer periods is good enough for the growth of this plant. The organic options you have are varied and numerous. You can use a significant quantity of compost or manure by mixing it within the soil every month.
You can mix compost with water and then strain it to make compost tea that you pour over the soil. Fish oil emulsion is another easily available option we regularly make use of. Chemical fertilizers are not needed, and we like to avoid them.
Sometimes, your plant might require a boost of nutrients. Go for a cactus fertilizer and dilute it by mixing water with it. These are some of our go-to precautions for keeping the plant safe from chemical burns.
Pruning should be carried out either in spring or summer. This is when the growth of the kalanchoe plant is at its peak. The stem ends will grow faster than before. By cutting stems at an angle of 45 degrees, you can promote the branching of new stems.
An important aspect of pruning flowering succulents is deadheading. This is when you remove the flowers off the plant by yourself without waiting for them to fade and fall off by themselves. Believe it or not, this phenomenon helps produce more flowers in the upcoming bloom season.
You don’t need to be an expert in pruning, but you need sharp and clean instruments. Use bleach, alcohol swabs, or any disinfectant of your choice to clean the cutting instruments before and after use.
You need to take advantage of the fact that this plant is extremely easy to propagate. Both methods are equally effective if you propagate a new plant from seeds or plantlets. That is why you must choose the method you like best .
Propagate your plantlets anytime from early spring to early summertime. You can start planting the seeds in late winter under controlled temperatures indoors.
– Propagation From Plantlets
This plant grows tiny little plantlets at the edges of its leaves. These plantlets are fully grown mature plants in a very small size. Pulling these off and planting them in the soil can help grow a larger-sized plant from them.
- First, prepare the ideal Kalanchoe soil that is well-draining and enriched. Put this soil in a small-sized pot in the beginning because a larger pot can lead to water logging.
- Use your fingers to pin off as many plantlets as you like from leaf edges. You can also cut them off using secateurs if you find it difficult to do it by hand.
- Plant half of this soil in the soil prepared beforehand and moisten reasonably.
- These plantlets need high humidity to take roots and produce new leaves. One thing you can do is to use a humidifier, but that would make your living space too humid for comfort. Keep the soil moist and wrap the pot using a transparent plastic sheet.
- Put the wrapped plantlet under bright sunlight that is not too harsh.
- Every week, lift the wrapping off to moisten the soil again. Then put the wrapping on the pot back up again.
- Under good care, it will take only two to three weeks for the kalanchoe plant to grow rapidly.
– Propagation From Seeds
Get a hold of the most high-quality Alligator plant seeds to have a higher chance of success using this method. If you already own this plant, you better collect these seeds yourself after the flowering season.
- Seeds need to be placed in water first for eight to ten hours to imbibe enough water needed for germination.
- These seeds then need a suitable nutritious medium to germinate in and obtain nutrients from. This can be a commercial seedling mixture, sphagnum moss, or compost. Whichever medium you choose to go with, lay it evenly on a shallow seedling tray.
- Take your seeds one by one and place them on the surface of the medium and press it only so much that they come in intimate contact with it.
- The seeds, too, need humidity levels up to 75 to 85 percent to germinate. For this, the easiest way is to wrap the seedling tray in a transparent plastic sheet after moisturizing the growth medium and placing it in a bright spot.
- The seeds will take about one month to germinate and then another month to grow big enough to be transplanted into a new pot. During this time, you will need to water the growth medium every week.
Like any other houseplant, this one can also experience problems such as pest attacks, overwatering, and low light conditions. It is also a toxic plant, and due care needs to be taken around it.
– Spider Mites
Spider mites are easily attracted to this plant from another infested plant or an infected gardening tool. They have suckers through which they feed on the sap flowing through the plant’s veins. Yellow splotches appear over the leaves, due to which the plant’s food-making ability gets severely impaired.
By looking under its leaves, you can easily identify if the plant is suffering from a mites infestation. Most of them hide there along with spiderwebs woven all around stems and leaves. Pull this plant away from other plants to prevent the infestation from spreading further.
Bath the plant so that you wash these bugs off first of all. Mix milk with water in a ratio of 20 to 80 to make a natural insecticidal remedy at home. Another equally effective natural remedy is made by mixing a tablespoon of neem oil in one gallon of water. All natural remedies must be sprayed on the plant every week until the plant gets healthier.
If lots of brown-colored pinpoint spots appear over your whole plant, then look closely to see whether or not these are scale insects. Scales are immobile pests that remain stuck to the plant and suck the sap from its leaves. The plant naturally begins to suffer and weaken over time.
The common signs and symptoms of a scale infestation are the same as those of a spider mite infestation. Leaves begin to yellow and start drooping off the plant abnormally. The plant’s food-making ability gets impaired and it begins to die over time. That is why you need to remove them from your plant as soon as possible.
Scales are stuck to the plant and must be scrubbed hard off the plant. Use a toothbrush to scrub them off. Then go for DIY pesticides, mixing 80 percent water with 20 percent vinegar. Be consistent in applying this mixture every week until the condition of the plant improves.
– Leggy Plant
A leggy plant is one with an abnormally stretched stem with spaced-out leaves. This happens under low light conditions when the plant actively starts growing towards any light source it can find.
This mostly happens when the plant is pushed to a corner of the room with light falling only on the side. For plants placed in corners indoors, you should remember to move them so that all sides get illuminated equally.
Similarly, it is important to grow the mother of millions plant under conditions of full bright light. It does not grow fully indoors unless you place it near a southern window.
– Yellowing Due To Overwatering
As succulent, your Kalanchoe has a very low tolerance for overwatering. If you neglect proper guidelines, the leaves will soon take in more water than their capacity and turn yellow. They lose their perkiness and bend down under their weight.
If you do not take prompt action, you risk losing the plant to rot or rapid leaf drop. First, stop watering your plant for the next few weeks and allow its soil to dry as much as 90 percent. Do not worry about not watering your plant for so long because it is pretty drought-resistant.
To expedite the drying process, it helps to move the plant to a sunnier spot if placed in a less shady spot. Once your plant starts drying, the yellow colors will revert. You must henceforth be very careful when watering to avoid further water logging.
Unfortunately, this is not a plant to be consumed or treated without caution because all of its parts are toxic. If ingested accidentally or with any other intent, it causes a most painful burning sensation in the mouth. This is followed by nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps.
During pruning and propagation, there is a risk that its sap might come in contact with your bare skin. This sap is also toxic and will cause boils, rashes, and redness over the exposed parts. In a few cases, extreme allergic reactions have also been reported.
A little care will go a long way while taking care of this plant. Always approach it while wearing full-sleeved shirts and thick rubber gloves, especially when cutting is involved. Wash the cutting instrument immediately after use, so it does not come in contact with anyone’s skin.
If any of the symptoms mentioned above are being experienced by you or someone else after coming in contact with this plant, please get emergency care immediately.
Are There Any Benefits To Be Had From the Mother of Millions Plant?
Interestingly, the plant offers an array of benefits. It helps prevent premature labor, has anti-cancer properties, and has anti-inflammatory properties as well.
Can I prune Mother Of Millions Plant?
Yes, you can prune the Mother of Millions plant to control its growth and prevent it from becoming too large. Pruning encourages bushier growth.
Does Mother Of Millions Plant grow faster in bigger pots?
Mother of Millions plants tend to grow faster in bigger pots due to increased root space and nutrient availability. Larger pots promote healthy growth.
Kalanchoe is a must-have plant for those of you who love keeping succulents.
Here is what you need to do to keep this plant healthy.
- Rainwater suits this plant the best and should be given when the top three to four inches of soil become dry.
- It can tolerate direct light, but it is safe to provide some shade in the summer.
- Use any good cactus fertilizer every month to facilitate growth.
- A range of 60 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit is the ideal temperature range for the mother of millions of plants.
Kalanchoe delagoensis is a unique-looking succulent with cute little plantlets growing all around the edges of its leaves. Many people find it a difficult plant to keep alive, but after reading our guide, you will not be one of them.