Trachyandra Tortilis Care InfographicTrachyandra tortilis of the Asphodelaceae family is a tuberous succulent that has a long life and short-lived flowers. Its unusual lifespan makes it perfect for gardeners who like to be with their plants for years.

The wonderful Trachyanda plant grows well indoors if the right care and environment is given. Our complete care guide will share everything that you need to know to grow this Trachyandra genus plant successfully.

Quick Overview

Here is a handy table of Trachyandra tortilis’ care requirements.

Requirements Trachyandra tortilis
Light Needs indirect sunlight and no direct exposure
Water It likes to be thoroughly drenched in water and allowed to dry out before the next watering
Soil Thrives in well-drained sandy or rocky soils
Temperature Temperatures between 41 to 59 degrees Fahrenheit
Humidity Low humidity levels

What Is Trachyandra Tortilis?

Trachyandra tortilis is a tuberous succulent that belongs to the genus Trachyandra and to the family Asphodelaceae. This plant looks like a star and grows flowers that live for only a day. The flowers are small and pale pink while the leaves are curly. Unlike its blooms, the plant itself has a long lifespan and thrives indoors.

– Origin and Habitat

The plant is found in the south of Vredendal and Saron, in Richtersveld and Namaqualand. These are areas in the Northern and Western Cape, Republic of South Africa.

– Scientific Classification

  • Family: Crassulaceae
  • Subfamily: Sedoideae
  • Genus: Adromischus
  • Tribe: Kalanchoe

– Foliage

The crowning glory of Trachyandra tortilis is its foliage. It is known for its uniquely-shaped leaves that curl or turn into a spiral as they grow. They have the appearance of folding ribbons.

The texture of Trachyandra succulent leaves is leathery and has a vibrant green color. This plant’s leaves store even more water than other species. Trachyandra tortilis can be called drought-tolerant because of its fleshy leaf.

The foliage of Trachyandra tortilis has such an appealing shape that it is considered a very attractive plant for indoor garden. Gardeners call it the best foliage plant to display at home.

– Flowers

various succulentsNow that we know how much gardeners appreciate the foliage of this plant, you will be happy to know that the flowers are even more loved.

Trachyandra tortilis plants begin flowering in late winter to early spring. The plant grows pale pink or white to gray flowers that appear on a single stalk. These flowers complete the look of this unique plant.

The flowers remain alive for only one day or less, so to catch the sight of this bloom, keep your eyes open!

– Size and Growth

Trachyandra tortilis plant has a long life span, but do not be worried about its size. The plant remains short and will need just a little space to be its best.

It reaches up to 10 inches tall, and its leaves will only be 4 inches wide. This compact size allows it to thrive in small pots.

Trachyandra tortilis is a slow-growing plant that gives you more benefits as a gardener. Do not worry about repotting it often or getting a bigger pot for it each year.

– Fragrance

The stunning plant with spiral leaves and beautiful flowers has more to offer. The flowers are sweetly scented and emit a fragrance when they begin to bloom in the flowering season, which is a bonus. The foliage does not have any smell.

– Toxicity

Trachyandra tortilis is a beautiful and super attractive plant that is also perfectly safe to have around children and pets. What more can one ask for?

Trachyandra Tortilis Care

Trachyandra tortilis is best grown indoors in a location that gets bright indirect light or in a well-lit room. Well-draining sandy soil is ideal for it. It grows up to 10 inches in height, and the green leaves grow as big as 4 inches in length and are usually 1 inch thick.

Interestingly, the plant begins to fold up after flowering. It is a very interesting-looking plant that looks perfect as a houseplant. The unique linear leaves of Trachyandra tortilis are surely very attractive.

In short, every feature of this plant is adorable. Be it the curly leaves or the flower stalk, everything looks exotic and beautiful.

WaterWater Requirements

While watering Trachyandra tortilis plants, be careful because this wonderful plant is sensitive to overwatering. It likes to be thoroughly drenched in water and allowed to dry out before the next watering. Water frequently during spring and slow down during winters when the plant likes to rest.

Keep the following watering points in mind:

  1. Do not water the Trachyandra Tortilis plant too often.
  2. Watering it every two weeks is perfectly adequate.
  3. Trachyandra Tortilis remains dormant during the summer, which is when you should water the plant once or twice per month.
  4. Allow the soil to dry after each watering.
  5. Too much water can harm the roots.

Having said that, you must observe how your plant responds to watering and adjust your watering schedule accordingly.

LightLight Requirements

Trachyandra tortilis need sunlight to make food. Make sure it is placed in a location with indirect sunlight and the plant is not directly exposed. Planting it indoors near a sunny window or a well-lit room gives you this control.

Trachyandra plants require up to 6 hours of indirect sunlight a day. A south-facing window will do the trick. A sheer curtain can give you the right amount of filtered light. If the light is absent at your place, you can always install artificial grow lights for your plants.

TemperatureTemperature Requirements

Trachyandra tortilis care guide remains incomplete without talking about its temperature requirements. The best temperature range for your plants is between 41 to 59 degrees Fahrenheit. USDA Hardiness Zones 9 to 11 could be the most suitable for growing these plants.

The plant does not tolerate cold well. If you live in an area that has temperatures colder than 20 degrees Fahrenheit, plant it in a succulent container. This way, you can easily bring it indoors during winter.

SoilSoil Requirements

Trachyandra tortilis is a plant that thrives most comfortably in well-drained sandy or rocky soils.


Trachyandra tortilis plants do not like to be in an environment that is high in humidity. High temperatures and humidity damage the plant.

– Pot

The right kind of pot will be not too big or too small for the plant. It must have enough drainage holes. Having a tray under the pot may not be a good idea as the plant likes to keep its roots dry.

Position your pot where the light conditions are correct to get the best results. You can be creative in terms of choosing a decorative pot for this exotic plant to enhance and complement its appearance.


– Where To Buy Trachyandra Tortilis

Because Trachyandra tortilis are rare plants, they are somewhat hard to find. Collectors buy specimens and propagate them privately before making them available for the market. One can not find this plant in gardens and stores easily.

However, you might have a good chance of finding this plant online. It may take repeated attempts to find this plant virtually. It is worth finding stores online that can potentially sell these. Subscribe to them for updates because usually the plants are not sold in bulk.

Trade shows and exhibitions could be another spot to find these wonderful plants. Stay in touch with exhibitors, collectors and vendors to keep yourself updated when they stock them.


Follow the steps below to perform a successful propagation on your Trachyandra tortilis plants:

  • Start with selecting a strong and healthy stem.
  • Remove the stem from the main plant carefully.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut the stem.
  • Allow it to sit for a few days before planting it in fresh and well-drained soil.
  • The potting soil should be totally drenched and should never be left to fully dry.
  • It will take some time for the plant to grow roots. Once that happens, it will continue to grow beautifully.


Trachyandra tortilis is a rare plant that needs specific care. While it could be ideal for people with some experience growing plants like this, a new gardener can also take care of it. All you need to know is to identify the problem and solve it. Some of the problems faced by these lovely plants are listed below.

– Pests

Luckily, Trachyandra tortilis pests attacks are not a massive problem. The plant is not attacked by pests often and remains visibly pest-free most of the time. If you do notice bugs infesting the plant you can employ any of the following remedies:

  • A cotton ball or swab dipped in rubbing alcohol to clean the curly leaves
  • Neem spray
  • Wash with insecticidal soap

– Diseases

The worst disease that can affect the Trachyandra tortilis plant is root rot, which is caused by overwatering and poor water drainage. If the roots are left to sit in excess water, they suffocate and begin to rot. This leads to the death of the plant.

Decaying roots are no longer serviceable. As a result, your plant will not get the supply of nutrients and water from the soil. If this is left to prolong, plant death is unavoidable.

What To Do

To resolve and to avoid this, you must not overwater your plant. Water only when it is needed. Follow the guideline above to know when to water your plant. For example, the plant may need more water in the growing season and less in the dormant season.

Growing Trachyandra tortilis plants is in many ways like growing any succulent, but its exotic and rare quality makes it important to be aware of exactly what it needs and when. Be dedicated as a gardener to taking care of this jewel. Follow the tips and tricks above to take care of your plant perfectly.


Other Useful Information

– Why Is It Called the Ribbon Plant?

Trachyandra tortilis is commonly called the ribbon plant because of its curly, coiled or spiral succulent leaves. The leaves are linear and give the appearance of a ribbon flowing in the air. This quality gives the South African plant its unique name.

– How Do You Grow Trachyandra Tortilis From Seeds?

Simply place the Trachyandra tortilis seeds on top of the soil and cover them lightly. Water them gently and wait for the shoots to spring up. Trachyandra tortilis is a rare plant and finding its seeds is even more tricky. If you do get ahold of some seeds, it is worth planting them to multiply your plants.

– Is Trachyandra Tortilis Toxic to Cats?

No, Trachyandra tortilis is not toxic to cats or pets in general. The plant is harmless for children and adults too, so it is perfectly safe to have it around the house.


Trachyandra tortilis is an exotic and very rare succulent from South Africa that is known for its linear coiled leaves that look like ribbons flowing in the air. The interesting appearance makes it popular among urban gardeners as it is also easy to grow indoors.

  • Trachyandra tortilis likes to grow in a well-drained potting mix that is sandy.
  • It is a slow grower with a very long life.
  • The plant produces flowers that are pale pink, have a sweet scent, and last for less than a day.
  • The plant doesn’t grow big and remains small even when fully mature.
  • It is succulent and needs moderate watering in the growing season and less in the dormant season.
  • Overwatering and dry spells damage the plant.
  • Trachyandra tortilis doesn’t tolerate cold or very hot temperatures.
  • In colder regions, the plant must be grown in pots and brought inside before temperatures drop.
  • It likes to grow in bright indirect light and needs 6 hours of light.
  • The plant is not toxic and it is safe to have around pets and children.
  • It can be propagated easily by planting stems.
  • Pests rarely attack the plant, but this can be controlled by using natural remedies.

Keep this stunning plant near a sunny window, water it when it is dry, and do not miss the flowering season. Trachyandra tortilis is the perfect plant for anyone who wants to keep a plant for many years, and we hope that our guide will help you grow this curly succulent plant.

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