Huernia Zebrina is a perennial succulent.They belong to the milkweed (Asclepiadaceae) family and are often regarded as the lifesaver cactus. Huernia is native to eastern and southern Africa to Arabia. The flower is a star-shaped flower with a bright colored ring-like structure surrounding the middle of the flower. The plant can be propagated via stem division.
These are xeriscape in nature.
This is an easy to grow and a sort of high maintenance plant. Although once it is established, not much attention is required. Huernia can tolerate casual watering and are perfect for your sunny windowsill.
They require full to dappled sunlight to grow.
The plant has low water needs. Supply a very less amount of water during winter or when they are dormant. Water the Huernia regularly when they are growing rapidly.
Let the soil dry out completely between the watering to provide a better drainage for the soil.
2 to 4 cups of water will do for the Huernia.
Make sure you don't feed the plant with fertilizers during their dormant season. Use half strength low nitrogen fertilizers and a bone meal once in a month to stimulate the growth of the plant.
Huernia can tolerate frost. The minimum temperature up to which the plant can resist is around -3°C.
Huernia requires bright sunlight to grow. If you feel that the plants are overexposed then keep it under a position which receives partial shade.
They grow best under 50 to 80° of F. Don't let your plant expose toward the harsh sun as it may scald the stems.
Huernia needs soil which is an equal mix of perlite, organic mulch or peat, and sand. They work best for them as they make the soil aerated in nature. Add a layer of gravel in the soil to provide better drainage.
Use clay pots or a better draining pot to help the soil from staying too wet and to allow them to dry up quickly.
They are the trickiest and intriguing flowers hence they are often grown indoors or on the patio.
The flowers are glitzy and bright. The flowers are usually red and yellow in color. It is patterned with yellow markings.
They bloom during the early summer and in the late spring.
The average diameter of the flower can go up to 1 to 2 inches.
Keep the plant towards the east facing window which experiences bright but not harsh sunlight.
The average height of the plant is around 6 inches and they can spread up to 12 inches wide.
The major pest that affects the plant is mealybugs. They have the capacity to kill this lifesaver plant by feeding on the sap and stems.
Examine the plant in every week to keep a check on mealybugs. Provide space to the plant to prevent infestation and spray organized pesticides over the plant to get rid of the bugs.
The plant is prominently used for ornamental purposes.