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About
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Basic Care
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Advanced Care
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More About How-Tos
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Pests & Diseases
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FAQ

How to Care for Calico Hearts

Adromischus maculatus, the calico hearts, is a species of flowering plant in the family Crassulaceae, which is endemic to the Eastern Cape and Western Cape of South Africa. Growing to 34 cm, it is a mat-forming succulent perennial with thick spade-shaped leaves growing from a short, prostrate, woody stem. Plants are variable in coloring. Some are plain green, while others have leaves which are covered in maroon or brown blotches - hence the specific epithet maculatus, meaning 'spotted'. In summer (December-January), tubular green inflorescences are borne on 25 to 30 cm long branches, with pink or white lobes. Adromischus maculatus grows on the sunny, sandstone slopes of South Africa's Langeberg Mountains. It is widely cultivated but does not tolerate prolonged frost, so in temperate regions, it is usually grown indoors as a houseplant. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.
Water
Water
Every 3 weeks
Sunlight
Sunlight
Full sun
Calico hearts
Calico hearts
care_basic_guide

Basic Care Guide

Cultivation:WaterDetail

How to Water Calico hearts?

For many novices, the most difficult problem is how much to water. Calico hearts doesn't need much water. Don't water to a schedule; instead, pay attention to the state of the plant and the weather conditions. Learn to water a succulent plant correctly from the following five tips.
A. Weather. In hot weather or low temperatures, succulent plants become dormant. Reduce watering, usually once every 1-2 weeks. Since the growth of the plant is stagnates when dormant, its absorption of water and nutrients is quite slow. At the same time, keep the environment dry and ventilated. Frequent watering can cause succulent plants to die due to black rot.
B. Time. In summer, water in the evening to avoid the noon sun, because high heat makes the newly watered soil stuffy, which makes the root system prone to black rot. Timing does not matter in other seasons.
C. State of the succulent. Succulent plants show obvious symptoms when they need water. For example, healthy leaves of Astridia velutina or Lithops sp. wrinkle and even curl up when they are short of water. For some succulent varieties, such as Monilaria obconica and Phyllobolus resurgens, leaves droop and slouch when they are thirsty. That's the signal of water shortage sent by the succulent plant.
D. Soil. You can also determine whether to water by observing the moisture of the soil. For potted succulent plants, you can weigh the pot in your hand to judge the amount of water left in the soil, because the weight of the soil is quite different when there's sufficient or insufficient water. In addition, if there's a gap between the outer edge of the soil and the inner edge of the pot, or the soil surface cracks, that is also a sign of water shortage.
E. Pot. Pots with good air permeability lose water faster, so the frequency can be higher. For porcelain pots or pot without drainage holes, watering frequency should be lower.
Cultivation:WaterDetail
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What should I do if I water my Calico hearts too much or too little?
Underwatered Calico hearts
Calico hearts and other succulents can endure long periods without water, so it’s unusual to find one of these suffering from underwatering. But, if you somehow forgot about your plant and neglected to water it for a month or more, you’ll probably find your Calico hearts looking thirsty or with some damage from lack of watering.
It is very easy to identify an underwatered Calico hearts. Plant look lacklustre and wrinkled. Some may have dried up completely, turned brown and crispy, or dropped off the plant. And of course, the soil will be completely dried out.
If your Calico hearts is thirsty and underwatered, give it plenty of water as soon as possible. Submerging the pot entirely in water for about 5-10 minutes is a good way to make sure the soil and plant are rehydrated properly. When you feel a sense of moisture on the surface of the soil with your finger, it means the watering is done properly.
Overwatered Calico hearts
Overwatering is dangerous to Calico hearts and can be fatal to your plant if you don’t remedy the situation. Too much moisture over time leads to root rot, which prevents the roots from being able to absorb nutrients and water from the soil. Root rot occurs when wet conditions allow fungi and bacteria to flourish in the soil and feed on roots. When you find that it's overwatered, you'd better change the growing conditions, place it somewhere with more air ventilation and adjust water frequency, for example.
The symptoms of overwatering are yellow, swollen, and translucent organs that may even burst open from being over-full with water. If the problem continues without being treated, plant might turn brown or black, and fall off the plant at the slightest touch. Be sure to check the soil to determine if overwatering is the culprit, as some other issues can cause similar symptoms.
It’s a bit difficult (but not impossible) to save an overwatered plant. The key is catching it early before a lot of damage has occurred. If the roots become rotten, it is likely to kill the entire plant. If you suspect you have overwatered your Calico hearts, the first step is to remove it from its pot and check the roots and soil.
After removing the plant from its pot, gently remove wet soil from around the roots and then rinse them clean in room-temperature water. This helps with removing fungus that might be lurking in the soil and allows you to get a better sense of how healthy the roots are. If your plant has already developed root rot, you will see roots that are dark brown or black, soft, mushy, or slimy.
If the majority of the roots are already affected by root rot, it may not be possible to save the plant. In this case, it is best to remove any healthy stem and try to use these to propagate a new Calico hearts. If, on the other hand, only a portion of the roots have succumbed to rot and other healthy roots still remain, there is a chance it can be saved.
Use a sterilized cutting tool to remove any unhealthy-looking roots. Once you're left with only the firm, pale roots, it’s a good idea to dip them in a fungicide to kill off any remaining spores. After that you can repot your Calico hearts in fresh, free-draining potting soil. While this does not always work to save a succulent with root rot, in most cases this plant will be able to make a full recovery and will put out new growth starting in the next growing season.
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How often should I water my Calico hearts?
There’s not a hard-and-fast rule for how often to water Calico hearts. The best way to determine this is to check the soil and only water when it’s bone dry. You can either stick your finger in the pot or use a moisture meter to check the soil below the surface. When you plant it in a deep pot, you can do this with a stick or chopstick. If it feels even a little bit moist, wait a few days and check it again.
Most people will need to water Calico hearts about every two weeks in summer and once a month in winter, but there are several factors that can change the frequency. The section below lists some considerations that can help you to determine how often to water.
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What should I consider when watering my Calico hearts?
There are several environmental conditions that will affect how your Calico hearts needs to be watered, including the container size, soil type, temperature, and humidity.
First off, the container and soil you use will determine how often to water and how much water to use each time. Be sure you use a container with plenty of drainage holes in the bottom so extra water can escape the pot. A small container has less room for soil, meaning it won’t hold as much moisture, while a larger pot will stay wet longer and need to be watered less often. It’s important not to keep your Calico hearts in an oversized pot as this can easily lead to overwatering. When repotting, move to just one size larger than the current container. A shallow container works better than a deep one, since Calico hearts has shallow root systems.
Calico hearts will need to be watered less often in winter and more often in the active growing season in spring and autumn. During the winter, growth slows down considerably and the plant isn’t using much energy or water. There is less water lost to evaporation in cooler winter air, meaning that soil stays wet for much longer than it would in the summer.
This also applies to the general climate around your home. If you live in a humid location with a lot of rain, you will need to water less often than if you live in a dry, arid climate. Remember that conditions at the same geographic location can vary significantly with the season and the use of indoor heating and air conditioning.
Outdoor Planting
If Calico hearts is planted in the ground, after establishing a root system, it shouldn’t need supplemental water beyond what it receives through precipitation and dew. But if there is a long dry period, you may want to water occasionally. In other areas where Calico hearts can only be grown in a container, this plant can be moved outside in the spring and summer when the temperature is proper and then brought back inside when temperatures start to drop. A potted Calico hearts kept outside usually needs more water than the same plant kept indoors, because there is a lot more sun exposure even on a shaded porch.
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How to water Calico hearts?
The best way to water Calico hearts is to soak it thoroughly and then allow it to dry out before it gets watered again. Since this plant is somewhat drought tolerant, you can let it get quite dry before watering again. It is always better to give this type of plant too little water over too much.
When you water, make sure the soil gets thoroughly soaked throughout the whole pot. Don’t pour the water in just one spot, but rather try to go around the whole rim of the planter to be sure that it has a chance to get wet on all sides of the plant. The correct amount of water will depend on the size of your container and how much water your soil absorbs. Give your Calico hearts enough water that it drains out from the drainage holes and then (ideally) leave the drained water in the saucer for about 20-30 minutes to absorb into dry pockets of soil. After that, discard any excess water that’s still in the saucer to avoid the soil getting waterlogged.
Bottom-watering is also an excellent method for Calico hearts, as you can be sure that the soil gets thoroughly moistened. This process involves placing the pot into a saucer of water and allowing the soil to absorb moisture through the drainage holes. You will know that the soil has absorbed enough water when the top layer is moist. This takes a bit more time than top-watering, but is almost foolproof in getting an even distribution of water throughout the pot.
The original habitat of Calico hearts is relatively dry with little rain, but when it rains, the soil will be thoroughly moistened. So you can mimic this situation by bottom-watering your plant when the soil is totally dry. Deep soil bathing is better than frequent light watering for Calico hearts.
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Cultivation:FertilizerDetail

How to Fertilize Calico hearts?

Most succulent plants are used to growing in the wild, where the environment is poor, so they do not need fertilization in their growth cycle. You can add a little slow-release fertilizer in early summer, but it's fine if you do not apply fertilizer at all. Don't fertilize during dormancy, because too many nutrients that it can't absorb may damages its growth.
Cultivation:FertilizerDetail
Why do I need to fertilize my Calico hearts?
Fertilizing Calico hearts adds nutrients to the growing medium. Even though it does store water and nutrients, applying plant food during the growing season helps support healthy growth. Fertilizing can also encourage mature specimens to produce blooms in the growing season.
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When is the best time to fertilize my Calico hearts?
While all plants benefit from additional nutrients, Calico hearts only needs a light dose of fertilizer during the growing season. The frequency of fertilization should be 1-2 times a year. It is suggested to fertilize your Calico hearts in the spring and autumn, but not in winter&summer when it is dormant. Be careful with repotted plants, you will want to reduce the amount of fertilizer. It’s also a good idea to wait a couple of months after repotting before you start applying fertilizer.
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When should I avoid fertilizing my Calico hearts?
Like most plants, Calico hearts has a dormancy period and it is when you want to stop the applications of fertilizer. In the summer and winter, the plant ceases growing, and it is when you want to stop applying fertilizer. It’s also a good idea to cease fertilizing for the first couple of months after repotting in the spring.
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What type of fertilizer does my Calico hearts need?
It’s best to use a liquid plant food formulated for succulents and cacti when you are fertilizing Calico hearts. Dilute the fertilizer with water to half-strength. You do not want the fertilizer building up in the soil. Apply the fertilizer to the base of the plant and water thoroughly, ensuring any excess moisture drains from the container or seeps into the ground.
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How do I fertilize my Calico hearts?
It is easier to use liquid plant food when you are fertilizing Calico hearts, but granules are another option. Follow the directions on the packaging, making sure you dilute liquid fertilizers to half-strength. Whether you are using granules are liquid plant food, always apply it to the soil. Cover the granules with a thin layer of soil and water regardless of the type of plant food you are using.
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What happens if I fertilize my Calico hearts too much?
Over-fertilizing Calico hearts is a common problem with new and experienced gardeners. The plant has low nutritional needs and it’s easy to apply a little too much fertilizer. Over-fertilizing Calico hearts can burn the plant’s sensitive roots resulting in its slow decay. Without its root system, the plant cannot absorb nutrients and moisture.
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Cultivation:SunlightDetail

What Are the Sunlight Requirements for Calico hearts?

Generally speaking, calico hearts needs bright, transparent, scattered light. Without enough sunlight over time, the plant becomes spindley, the tissue becomes brittle, and the color fades slowly. The plant's shape becomes loose, it turns green and yellow, and its resistance to disease decreases.
Strong summer sunlight may burn its leaves and stems. When exposed to the sun, it tends to grow slowly or not at all. Its leaves grow compactly and stems shorten, which results in a shorter plant. In some succulent plants, old leaves wither in summer and new leaves tend to be short and compact, showing a bare rod shape. In summer, set up a sunshade or move the potted plant indoors.
Cultivation:SunlightDetail
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How much sunlight does Calico hearts need to grow?
Calico hearts should get at least 6 hours of sun per day, and preferably more. An actual minimum number of hours can vary depending on the intensity of sunlight and other environmental factors, but it is unlikely that the Calico hearts will get too much sunlight. They do fine with up to 14 hours of sun per day.
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What type of sunlight does Calico hearts need?
Calico hearts needs a lot of bright sunlight. As full-sun plants, they can thrive when given direct light or bright indirect sun. Some types may be able to survive with partial sun, but more sunlight is generally better.
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Should I protect Calico hearts from sun exposure?
Calico hearts usually grows in some of the hottest, sunniest places in the world and is well adapted to that kind of environment, so it does not need to be protected from the sun. However, you should be careful about making a sudden move into a very sunny location if your Calico hearts is not used to it. Plants need time to adapt to different conditions, so start by moving this plant into the sun for a couple of hours at a time each day, then gradually lengthen the amount of sun exposure. Once adapted, most types of Calico hearts will be fine in full sun and don't need protection.
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What will happen if Calico hearts doesn't get enough sunlight?
Without enough sunlight, Calico hearts will fail to thrive and grow. Common symptoms of inadequate sunlight include pale coloring, wilting leaves, and leaf drop. Calico hearts may also exhibit etiolation (also called legginess). This condition occurs as the plant attempts to stretch toward the light source, leading to a sparse appearance and weak stems.
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What will happen if Calico hearts gets too much sunlight?
Calico hearts may develop shades of red, pink, or orange as a means of protection from excess sunlight, so many people like to cause mild sun stress to these plants during the summer. This is not harmful, and they will revert to their normal coloring when light levels decrease from autumn to spring.
If moved too quickly into direct sun, Calico hearts can suffer from sunburn. This looks like white or brown spots on the uppermost leaves that have been exposed to the most sun. A sunburned plant should be moved to a shadier location and watered if needed. Sun-damaged leaves can be removed, and should be replaced by new growth over time.
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Does Calico hearts need special care about sunlight during its different growth stages?
As with most plants, younger Calico hearts will be more sensitive to strong sunlight and heat than a mature specimen. They should also be protected from direct sun immediately after being transplanted, either by a shade or by keeping the container in a shadier location until the plant is established and putting out new growth.
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Are there any cautions or tips for sunlight and Calico hearts?
It is best to water Calico hearts in the morning, particularly during the summer months. If water sits on the leaves or in the crown of the plant, it can burn the plant when the water heats up. It’s also best not to water in the evening, since cooler overnight temperatures slow evaporation and fungi or bacteria can develop in the moist conditions.
Calico hearts grown in pots should be rotated occasionally to keep them growing symmetrically. Plants will normally grow toward the light source, so they can develop much more quickly on one side than the other if they are not rotated.
If Calico hearts is allowed to get dusty, it will not be able to access sunlight to create energy. The dust acts as a barrier, so the plant may show signs of inadequate light even if it’s in a sunny location. Keep the leaves and stems clean by wiping them periodically with a damp cloth to avoid this issue.
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Cultivation:PruningDetail

How to Prune Calico hearts?

In order to keep a beautiful shape, large succulent plants may need pruning. For example, for echeveria planted in the garden, redundant branches or branches that are too dense need to be cut off in spring and fall. This depends on the plant's purpose and your preference. Tools for pruning mainly include knives, scissors, and some medicines (such as sulfur powder).
In order to propagate new plants, cut some leaves in spring and fall. Select a stout stem with 5-6 leaves. Cut it off with a knife, then smear the wound with sulfur powder, and plant it after the wound is healed. Slightly wet the soil used for planting.
Cultivation:PruningDetail
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care_advanced_guide

Advanced Care Guide

Cultivation:WaterAndHardinessDetail

What is the Ideal Temperature Range for Calico hearts?

Calico hearts grows in mild temperature in spring and fall, and cannot resist extreme cold. If you are not in warmer area, grow it as a potted plant better rather than directly in garden soil.
When the temperature is higher than 30 ℃ in summer, calico hearts may become dormant. When the temperature is lower than 5 ℃ in winter, move it indoors to avoid irreversible frostbite or death. Its growing season is in spring and fall, and it needs a little water. In summer and winter, when it is dormant, watering should be reduced.
Cultivation:WaterAndHardinessDetail
What's the ideal temperature for your Calico hearts?
It is more suitable to keep the Calico hearts in a particular range of conditions. Temperatures the same as 75-90℉ (25-32℃) are ideal for it. During the early winter season, the temperature shouldn't go below 75℉(25℃) for Calico hearts. You can even move it indoors as it will have better protection from the extremes.
Despite that, the Calico hearts can survive in some extreme temperatures. Sometimes can survive in low temperatures like 50℉ (15℃), but it is not ideal. You should bring it inside if winter conditions are expected outside.
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How should I adjust the temperature for my Calico hearts during different growing phases?
Calico hearts has different growing phases. In the first stage, the dormant seed grows and transforms into a seedling. The dormant seeds need the appropriate conditions in their surroundings to grow as their seeds need a temperature of 75-90℉ (25-32℃) to germinate. The ideal time to make it grow vigorously is during the summer, as the most suitable temperature is around 85℉(30℃). You can adjust the placement of your Calico hearts from indoors to sunlight during the hot summer months to receive enough sunlight.
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How can I keep my Calico hearts warm in cold seasons?
It's advisable to bring your Calico hearts indoors to avoid the harsh winter conditions. People opt to buy different types of grow light to provide enough sunlight for the plant. However, if your home is not extremely dark, it is not essential to buy these lights. Keep your plants where they will get the most sunlight possible. There should be sufficient light to keep the Calico hearts thriving in winter. If you have several Calico hearts, then keep them rotating so that they all receive enough sunlight.
Avoid placing your Calico hearts too close to the window if you live in northern areas with frigid weather. The cold may be extreme to them, due to which they might get damaged.
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What happens to my Calico hearts when the temperature is too high or too low?
Your Calico hearts can grow better in summers and do better in warm temperatures 90℉(32℃) but you should protect it from temperature extremes during hot climates.
However, during winter, it is better to keep your plant dry. Calico hearts do well in temperate climates having temperatures between 75-90℉ (25-32℃). However, some gardeners can expose their Calico hearts to extreme temperatures causing stress in their plants. While high temperatures ranging between 90℉ and 95℉(32-35℃) can help maintain the deep colors for Calico hearts, you must be careful when trying out such experiment. During the hot summer season extremely high temperatures can burn your Calico hearts damaging their stem and root system. During the hottest time of the day (when the temperature is extremely high), consider relocating your plant to a shaded place or protect them with a shade cloth.
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How should I adjust the temperature for my Calico hearts in different seasons?
In summers, high temperatures make the growth of Calico hearts slowed down to survive in too hot a temperature.
As the cooler periods and rainfall begins, the Calico hearts starts growing. If the place you live in has hot summers and warm winters with more rainfalls, you aren't required to change anything.
However, if you live in a place with cold winters, you should let your Calico hearts grow more in summer and rest in winter. It is because there is not enough sunlight for Calico hearts to grow in winter.
You can help your Calico hearts enter dormancy if you live in a place with cold temperatures by decreasing the temperature to 50℉ to 75℉ (15℃ to 25℃).
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How can I keep my Calico hearts warm without a heating pad?
To withstand freezing temperatures outside, as a solution, you can insulate your Calico hearts with frost cloths, row covers, tents etc. You can also mulch your Calico hearts with small rocks. Mulching the Calico hearts soil will provide warmth to your plants and will not let you over-water the plant.
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How can I protect my Calico hearts from temperature damage?
Calico hearts is adapted to sunlight and requires sufficient sunlight for healthy growth. You can place it in an outdoor environment without any shade. However, Calico hearts shouldn't be kept for a long time in the blazing sunlight in the hot summer when it requires to be put under shade so that extreme temperature doesn't damage them. If the winter is extreme in our area, you must keep your Calico hearts indoors to keep them away from frost.
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What are the tips and precautions for keeping my Calico hearts at the right temperature?
Increase water and fertilizer during the growth of plants in spring and summer. Prevent your plant from receiving too much sunlight. To cool plants, spray water around them when the temperature is exceptionally high but don't put water on their stem.
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Cultivation:SoilDetail

What Soil is Best for Calico hearts?

Loose, ventilated soil is very important for the growth of calico hearts. Generally speaking, the soil is divided into three layers. From top to bottom: the top deco layer, the middle planting layer, and the lower hydrophobic layer. Each requires different types of soils.
The top deco soil is paved on the soil surface for the decoration and fixation of plants. Some can prevent diseases and insect pests. When it's completely dry, it's time to water. There are many types of soil that can be used as top deco soil, such as white pebble, akadama soil, kiryuu sands, kanuma soil, etc. Choose it according to specific pots and plants.
The middle layer soil fixes plants in place and provides nutrients for plants to grow. You can buy succulent planting soil from a store, or buy soil materials to mix yourself. The common soil formulation for this layer is peat moss:perlite:volcanic rock:vermiculite = 4:2:2:2.
The soil of the lower hydrophobic layer is placed at the bottom of the flowerpot or garden hole to evacuate the excess water in the succulent root system and prevent the root system from rotting due to water accumulation. The hydrophobic layer can be made of ceramsite, volcanic stone, or other large-scale culture media. Coal slag or charcoal are also good choices. If it is planted in the garden, make sure the bottom drainage layer has good water permeability.
Cultivation:SoilDetail
Cultivation:PropagationDetail

How to Propagate Calico hearts?

There are many ways to propagate succulents. Seeds can be collected for sowing, but they are difficult to germinate. It is more common to use leaves for cutting propagation, generally in spring and fall. Select a whole leaf of a healthy plant, cut it off with a knife, and lay it flat on slightly humid soil with the leaf base close to the soil. Provide it with suitable temperature (25 ℃) and light (bright, scattered light). In a week or two, a bud will grow at the leaf base.
Cultivation:PropagationDetail
Cultivation:PlantingDetail

How to Plant Calico hearts?

When planting, add the hydrophobic layer to the flowerpot first, and then a small amount of soil of the planting layer. Then spread out the roots and put them in. Cover the root with planting soil slowly. Add the top decorative layer, and finally, water once. To plant in the garden, dig a pit 1.5-2 times the size of the root system first, and then follow the above steps.
In order to make it grow better and faster, or if the roots are too dense or unhealthy, it needs to be repotted. Repot in spring and fall. Before repotting, stop watering a few days in advance. Once the soil is dried, you can gently knock the pot outside. Or you can use a knife to separate the soil from the pot. Gently pull the plant up slightly to ease it out of the pot, and then follow the steps described above.
Though you can plant different colors of succulent plants together, avoid planting succulent plants with different growth habits together. Some succulents need water in the summer, while others don't. If they are planted together, one will become sick due to excessive watering, while the other may wither due to insufficient water.
Cultivation:PlantingDetail
seasonal-tip

Seasonal Precautions

There are several ways to ensure ventilation in summer. ① use loose soil; ② use a ceramic pot with good air permeability; ③ keep potted plants in multi-ventilated environments.
In summer, avoid strong summer light. Move potted plants indoors, and shade outdoors plants. In addition, avoid direct sunlight after watering, as this will burn the plants.
Varieties with thick leaves have high water content in their leaves and easily dehydrate in heat. Reduce their water supply earlier, which can help plants enter dormancy smoothly and avoid being hurt by high temperature in summer.
seasonal-tip
care_scenes

More Info on Calico Hearts Growth and Care

Basic Care Guide
Lighting
Full sun
Calico hearts appreciates lavish exposure to light, contributing significantly to its robust growth. Its origin environment offers relentless lighting. Insufficient light could weaken it; excessive exposure may scorch it. It doesn't necessitate any shade protection. Its sunlight requirement doesn't fluctuate between different growth stages.
Best Sunlight Practices
Temperature
0 43 ℃
Calico hearts is native to climates where temperatures often range from 68 to 100℉ (20 to 38℃). It thrives when maintained within this temperature range. In colder seasons, it is recommended to incrementally reduce temperatures to mimic its natural habitat.
Temp for Healthy Growth
care_pet_and_diseases

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Calico hearts based on 10 million real cases
Scars
Scars Scars
Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Solutions: Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Soft rot
Soft rot Soft rot
Soft rot
Soft rot causes the entire plant to turn black and rot from the inside out.
Solutions: Once soft rot appears, it is difficult to control. For minor issues of soft rot where only a small area is affected: Reduce watering. Only water when the soil is completely dry. Prune away affected tissue. Remove all dead and/or rotting roots and leaves. Use sterile tools. Repot using new soil. If potted, repot the plant with new soil. Be sure to use a pot with proper drainage holes. For severe cases when a large amount of tissue is infected or black: Dispose of plant. Severely infected plants will not recover. Dispose of the plant so that other nearby plants are not infected. Do not compost the infected plant.
Leaf rot
Leaf rot Leaf rot
Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
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Scars
plant poor
Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Scars form when the plant repairs wounds. They can be the result of people or pets passing by and scraping the plant. Once the underlying issue is resolved, the plant will heal but a scar may remain.
Pests and pathogens can also cause scarring. Insects may attack the plant for a meal, resulting in extensive scarring when a few invaders turn into an infestation. Diseases such as fungus and bacteria can weaken the plant, causing brown spots, mushy areas, or blisters that lead to scars.
Scars occur on stems when a leaf or bud has been lost and the plant has healed. The harder tissue is like a scab that protects a wound.
On other occasions, scars can signal problems from environmental conditions, such as overexposure to sunlight or heat. It might surprise you to know that plants can suffer from sunburn, even desert dwellers like cactus!
Solutions
Solutions
Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover.
  1. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes.
  2. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray.
  3. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs.
  4. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Prevention
Prevention
Preventing some sources of scarring is easier than others, but all start with careful attention to your plants once you decide to bring them home.
  1. Review specific guidelines for your plant, including soil drainage, watering, and fertilizer requirements.
  2. Inspect plants before planting and use sterile pots and fresh potting soil or media to limit transfer of fungi or bacteria.
  3. Once established, check your plants regularly for signs of scarring or the presence of pests, as it is better to catch problems as early as possible.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
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Soft rot
plant poor
Soft rot
Soft rot causes the entire plant to turn black and rot from the inside out.
Overview
Overview
Soft rot is a common disease affecting mostly fruits and vegetables. It can occur while plants are growing but is more common once the produce has been harvested. The most susceptible plants are fleshy vegetables like tomatoes, lettuce, sweet potato, capsicum, bananas, eggplants, squash, cucumber, avocados, and potatoes.
Many succulents are also susceptible to soft rot. This is especially the case when the plant has received some damage, as bacteria enters the succulent through the open wound.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Initially, the disease is spotted in the form of soft, wet, cream-to-tan necrotic spots. These may appear on fruits and vegetables, including tubers, or succulent leaves and stems. The spots are surrounded by a dark brown to black ring.
As the disease progresses, the plant part becomes infected with a soft and slimy rot that has a foul odor. A dark discoloration can be seen internally. Potatoes, sweet potatoes and other tubers will have evidence of this rot under the skin. Fruits like avocados exhibit a dark metallic sheen on the outside and the flesh is grey to black. The flesh also has a putrid odor.
Succulents with soft rot will have watery-looking scabs on the stems or leaves. As the disease progresses, the spots will turn brown to black and they may have a foul-smelling discharge. For succulents with shorter stems, it may be more difficult to notice the earliest symptoms, and soft rot may not be noticed until the plant has already begun rotting from the center.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Soft rot is caused by the bacteria Erwinia cartovorum. This bacteria secretes enzymes that decompose the cell wall structure of the plant. This destroys the plant tissue and causes the plant or its fruit to rot.
The bacteria lives in crop debris as well as soil and water, including the ocean. It infects plants through open wounds, including those caused by overwatering in succulents. It is normally spread by splashing water, insects, and wind. Infection is worse in hot and humid weather.
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Leaf rot
plant poor
Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Overview
Overview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
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care_more_info

More About Calico Hearts

Spread
Spread
10 cm
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Spring, Summer
Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow
Green
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Red
Flower Size
Flower Size
1.5 cm
Plant Height
Plant Height
15 cm
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Common Problems

Why do my plant's leaves turn yellow and wither?

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It's a natural phenomenon for leaves turn yellow and wither. Don't panic. If new buds turn yellow and withered, it is abnormal, and may be caused by lack of some mineral fertilizer or by sunburn.

Why do its leaves wrinkle?

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Wrinkled leaves are generally due to water shortage. When a succulent lacks water, wrinkled or shriveled leaves reminds you to water them.

Why does it have a very tall stem but few leaves?

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Lack of light can lead to a weak, tall stem, fewer leaves, and vulnerableness of plant tissue, which makes the plant prone to injury. Place the succulent in a well-lit area and it will slowly improve over time.
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About
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FAQ
Calico hearts
Calico hearts

How to Care for Calico Hearts

Adromischus maculatus, the calico hearts, is a species of flowering plant in the family Crassulaceae, which is endemic to the Eastern Cape and Western Cape of South Africa. Growing to 34 cm, it is a mat-forming succulent perennial with thick spade-shaped leaves growing from a short, prostrate, woody stem. Plants are variable in coloring. Some are plain green, while others have leaves which are covered in maroon or brown blotches - hence the specific epithet maculatus, meaning 'spotted'. In summer (December-January), tubular green inflorescences are borne on 25 to 30 cm long branches, with pink or white lobes. Adromischus maculatus grows on the sunny, sandstone slopes of South Africa's Langeberg Mountains. It is widely cultivated but does not tolerate prolonged frost, so in temperate regions, it is usually grown indoors as a houseplant. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.
Water
Every 3 weeks
Water
Sunlight
Full sun
Sunlight Sunlight detail
care_basic_guide

Basic Care Guide

Cultivation:WaterDetail

How to Water Calico hearts?

Cultivation:WaterDetail
For many novices, the most difficult problem is how much to water. Calico hearts doesn't need much water. Don't water to a schedule; instead, pay attention to the state of the plant and the weather conditions. Learn to water a succulent plant correctly from the following five tips.
A. Weather. In hot weather or low temperatures, succulent plants become dormant. Reduce watering, usually once every 1-2 weeks. Since the growth of the plant is stagnates when dormant, its absorption of water and nutrients is quite slow. At the same time, keep the environment dry and ventilated. Frequent watering can cause succulent plants to die due to black rot.
B. Time. In summer, water in the evening to avoid the noon sun, because high heat makes the newly watered soil stuffy, which makes the root system prone to black rot. Timing does not matter in other seasons.
C. State of the succulent. Succulent plants show obvious symptoms when they need water. For example, healthy leaves of Astridia velutina or Lithops sp. wrinkle and even curl up when they are short of water. For some succulent varieties, such as Monilaria obconica and Phyllobolus resurgens, leaves droop and slouch when they are thirsty. That's the signal of water shortage sent by the succulent plant.
D. Soil. You can also determine whether to water by observing the moisture of the soil. For potted succulent plants, you can weigh the pot in your hand to judge the amount of water left in the soil, because the weight of the soil is quite different when there's sufficient or insufficient water. In addition, if there's a gap between the outer edge of the soil and the inner edge of the pot, or the soil surface cracks, that is also a sign of water shortage.
E. Pot. Pots with good air permeability lose water faster, so the frequency can be higher. For porcelain pots or pot without drainage holes, watering frequency should be lower.
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What should I do if I water my Calico hearts too much or too little?
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How often should I water my Calico hearts?
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What should I consider when watering my Calico hearts?
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How to water Calico hearts?
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Cultivation:FertilizerDetail

How to Fertilize Calico hearts?

Cultivation:FertilizerDetail
Most succulent plants are used to growing in the wild, where the environment is poor, so they do not need fertilization in their growth cycle. You can add a little slow-release fertilizer in early summer, but it's fine if you do not apply fertilizer at all. Don't fertilize during dormancy, because too many nutrients that it can't absorb may damages its growth.
Why do I need to fertilize my Calico hearts?
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When is the best time to fertilize my Calico hearts?
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When should I avoid fertilizing my Calico hearts?
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What type of fertilizer does my Calico hearts need?
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Cultivation:SunlightDetail

What Are the Sunlight Requirements for Calico hearts?

Cultivation:SunlightDetail
Generally speaking, calico hearts needs bright, transparent, scattered light. Without enough sunlight over time, the plant becomes spindley, the tissue becomes brittle, and the color fades slowly. The plant's shape becomes loose, it turns green and yellow, and its resistance to disease decreases.
Strong summer sunlight may burn its leaves and stems. When exposed to the sun, it tends to grow slowly or not at all. Its leaves grow compactly and stems shorten, which results in a shorter plant. In some succulent plants, old leaves wither in summer and new leaves tend to be short and compact, showing a bare rod shape. In summer, set up a sunshade or move the potted plant indoors.
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How much sunlight does Calico hearts need to grow?
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What type of sunlight does Calico hearts need?
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Should I protect Calico hearts from sun exposure?
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What will happen if Calico hearts doesn't get enough sunlight?
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Cultivation:PruningDetail

How to Prune Calico hearts?

Cultivation:PruningDetail
In order to keep a beautiful shape, large succulent plants may need pruning. For example, for echeveria planted in the garden, redundant branches or branches that are too dense need to be cut off in spring and fall. This depends on the plant's purpose and your preference. Tools for pruning mainly include knives, scissors, and some medicines (such as sulfur powder).
In order to propagate new plants, cut some leaves in spring and fall. Select a stout stem with 5-6 leaves. Cut it off with a knife, then smear the wound with sulfur powder, and plant it after the wound is healed. Slightly wet the soil used for planting.
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care_advanced_guide

Advanced Care Guide

Cultivation:WaterAndHardinessDetail

What is the Ideal Temperature Range for Calico hearts?

Cultivation:WaterAndHardinessDetail
Calico hearts grows in mild temperature in spring and fall, and cannot resist extreme cold. If you are not in warmer area, grow it as a potted plant better rather than directly in garden soil.
When the temperature is higher than 30 ℃ in summer, calico hearts may become dormant. When the temperature is lower than 5 ℃ in winter, move it indoors to avoid irreversible frostbite or death. Its growing season is in spring and fall, and it needs a little water. In summer and winter, when it is dormant, watering should be reduced.
What's the ideal temperature for your Calico hearts?
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How should I adjust the temperature for my Calico hearts during different growing phases?
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How can I keep my Calico hearts warm in cold seasons?
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What happens to my Calico hearts when the temperature is too high or too low?
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Cultivation:SoilDetail

What Soil is Best for Calico hearts?

Cultivation:SoilDetail
Loose, ventilated soil is very important for the growth of calico hearts. Generally speaking, the soil is divided into three layers. From top to bottom: the top deco layer, the middle planting layer, and the lower hydrophobic layer. Each requires different types of soils.
The top deco soil is paved on the soil surface for the decoration and fixation of plants. Some can prevent diseases and insect pests. When it's completely dry, it's time to water. There are many types of soil that can be used as top deco soil, such as white pebble, akadama soil, kiryuu sands, kanuma soil, etc. Choose it according to specific pots and plants.
The middle layer soil fixes plants in place and provides nutrients for plants to grow. You can buy succulent planting soil from a store, or buy soil materials to mix yourself. The common soil formulation for this layer is peat moss:perlite:volcanic rock:vermiculite = 4:2:2:2.
The soil of the lower hydrophobic layer is placed at the bottom of the flowerpot or garden hole to evacuate the excess water in the succulent root system and prevent the root system from rotting due to water accumulation. The hydrophobic layer can be made of ceramsite, volcanic stone, or other large-scale culture media. Coal slag or charcoal are also good choices. If it is planted in the garden, make sure the bottom drainage layer has good water permeability.
Cultivation:PropagationDetail

How to Propagate Calico hearts?

Cultivation:PropagationDetail
There are many ways to propagate succulents. Seeds can be collected for sowing, but they are difficult to germinate. It is more common to use leaves for cutting propagation, generally in spring and fall. Select a whole leaf of a healthy plant, cut it off with a knife, and lay it flat on slightly humid soil with the leaf base close to the soil. Provide it with suitable temperature (25 ℃) and light (bright, scattered light). In a week or two, a bud will grow at the leaf base.
Cultivation:PlantingDetail

How to Plant Calico hearts?

Cultivation:PlantingDetail
When planting, add the hydrophobic layer to the flowerpot first, and then a small amount of soil of the planting layer. Then spread out the roots and put them in. Cover the root with planting soil slowly. Add the top decorative layer, and finally, water once. To plant in the garden, dig a pit 1.5-2 times the size of the root system first, and then follow the above steps.
In order to make it grow better and faster, or if the roots are too dense or unhealthy, it needs to be repotted. Repot in spring and fall. Before repotting, stop watering a few days in advance. Once the soil is dried, you can gently knock the pot outside. Or you can use a knife to separate the soil from the pot. Gently pull the plant up slightly to ease it out of the pot, and then follow the steps described above.
Though you can plant different colors of succulent plants together, avoid planting succulent plants with different growth habits together. Some succulents need water in the summer, while others don't. If they are planted together, one will become sick due to excessive watering, while the other may wither due to insufficient water.
seasonal-tip

Seasonal Precautions

There are several ways to ensure ventilation in summer. ① use loose soil; ② use a ceramic pot with good air permeability; ③ keep potted plants in multi-ventilated environments.
In summer, avoid strong summer light. Move potted plants indoors, and shade outdoors plants. In addition, avoid direct sunlight after watering, as this will burn the plants.
Varieties with thick leaves have high water content in their leaves and easily dehydrate in heat. Reduce their water supply earlier, which can help plants enter dormancy smoothly and avoid being hurt by high temperature in summer.
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More Info on Calico Hearts Growth and Care

Basic Care Guide
care_pet_and_diseases

Common Pests & Diseases

Common issues for Calico hearts based on 10 million real cases
Scars
Scars Scars Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Solutions: Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Learn More About the Scars more
Underwatering
Underwatering Underwatering Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Solutions: The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with. Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock. In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Learn More About the Underwatering more
Soft rot
Soft rot Soft rot Soft rot
Soft rot causes the entire plant to turn black and rot from the inside out.
Solutions: Once soft rot appears, it is difficult to control. For minor issues of soft rot where only a small area is affected: Reduce watering. Only water when the soil is completely dry. Prune away affected tissue. Remove all dead and/or rotting roots and leaves. Use sterile tools. Repot using new soil. If potted, repot the plant with new soil. Be sure to use a pot with proper drainage holes. For severe cases when a large amount of tissue is infected or black: Dispose of plant. Severely infected plants will not recover. Dispose of the plant so that other nearby plants are not infected. Do not compost the infected plant.
Learn More About the Soft rot more
Leaf rot
Leaf rot Leaf rot Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Solutions: Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden. In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label. In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Learn More About the Leaf rot more
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Scars
plant poor
Scars
Any light-colored markings that appear on stems but which do not enlarge or multiply are simply scars that have healed.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Scars form when the plant repairs wounds. They can be the result of people or pets passing by and scraping the plant. Once the underlying issue is resolved, the plant will heal but a scar may remain.
Pests and pathogens can also cause scarring. Insects may attack the plant for a meal, resulting in extensive scarring when a few invaders turn into an infestation. Diseases such as fungus and bacteria can weaken the plant, causing brown spots, mushy areas, or blisters that lead to scars.
Scars occur on stems when a leaf or bud has been lost and the plant has healed. The harder tissue is like a scab that protects a wound.
On other occasions, scars can signal problems from environmental conditions, such as overexposure to sunlight or heat. It might surprise you to know that plants can suffer from sunburn, even desert dwellers like cactus!
Solutions
Solutions
Each source of scarring requires a different approach to help your plant recover.
  1. Protect the trunk and leaves from physical damage like scrapes.
  2. If pests or disease are the cause of scarring, isolate the plant from others to avoid further spread. Some pests can be removed with organic remedies such as a soft cloth and soapy water solution or diluted isopropyl alcohol spray.
  3. Stop sunburn by moving your plant away from direct sunlight and making sure it has the water it needs.
  4. Frequent leaf or bud loss may be due to insufficient light or nutrients.
Prevention
Prevention
Preventing some sources of scarring is easier than others, but all start with careful attention to your plants once you decide to bring them home.
  1. Review specific guidelines for your plant, including soil drainage, watering, and fertilizer requirements.
  2. Inspect plants before planting and use sterile pots and fresh potting soil or media to limit transfer of fungi or bacteria.
  3. Once established, check your plants regularly for signs of scarring or the presence of pests, as it is better to catch problems as early as possible.
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Underwatering
plant poor
Underwatering
Leaves may wilt for a variety of reasons.
Overview
Overview
Underwatering plants is one of the quickest ways to kill them. This is something that most gardeners are well aware of. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how much water a plant needs can be tricky, especially considering that underwatering and overwatering present similar symptoms in plants.
Therefore, it’s important to be vigilant and attentive to each plants’ individual needs.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
As mentioned earlier, overwatering and underwatering present similar symptoms in plants. These symptoms include poor growth, wilted leaves, defoliation, and brown leaf tips or margins. Ultimately, both underwatering and overwatering can lead to the death of a plant.
The easiest way to determine whether a plant has too much water or too little is to look at the leaves. If underwatering is the culprit, the leaves will look brown and crunchy, while if it’s overwatering, they will appear yellow or a pale green in color.
When this issue first begins, there may be no noticeable symptoms at all, particularly in hardy or drought-tolerant plants. However, they will begin to wilt once they start suffering from a lack of water. The edges of the plant’s leaves will become brown or curled. Soil pulling away from the edges of the planter is a telltale sign, or a crispy, brittle stem.
Prolonged underwatering can cause a plant’s growth to become stunted. The leaves might drop and the plant can be more susceptible to pest infestations, too.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Underwatering is caused by, quite simply, not watering plants often or deeply enough. There is a heightened risk of underwatering if any of these situations apply:
  • Extreme heat and dry weather (when growing outdoors)
  • Grow lights or indoor lighting that is too bright or intense for the type of plant
  • Using fast-draining growing media such as sand
Solutions
Solutions
The easiest (and most obvious) way to address underwatering is to fully hydrate the plant. However, this must be done carefully. A common mistake that many gardeners make is to douse their underwatered plants with water. This can overwhelm the roots of the plant and shock its system, something that can be even more damaging than the lack of water to begin with.
Instead, water thoroughly and slowly, taking breaks to let the water slowly saturate through the soil to get to the roots. Use room temperature water, as cold water might be too much of a shock.
In the future, shorten the time between waterings. A good rule of thumb is to check the soil around each plant daily. If it’s dry to at least two inches down, it’s time to water. If a container plant is repeatedly drying out very quickly, repotting into a slower-draining container might be a good idea, too.
Prevention
Prevention
Always check the soil before watering. If the top inch of soil feels moist, though not wet, the watering is perfect. If it’s dry, water it immediately. If it feels soggy, you avoid watering until it dries out a bit more.
Also, make sure the lighting is sufficient for the species. Plants grow faster and need more water when there is intense light or lots of heat. Being aware of these conditions and modifying them, if possible, is a good way to prevent underwatering. Many container plants are potted in soil mixtures mean to be well-draining. Adding materials that retain moisture, like compost or peat moss, can also prevent these symptoms.
Other tips to prevent underwatering include:
  • Choose pots with adequately-sized drainage holes
  • Avoid warm temperatures
  • Use large pots with additional soil (these take longer to dry out)
  • Avoid terracotta pots, which lose water quickly
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Soft rot
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Soft rot
Soft rot causes the entire plant to turn black and rot from the inside out.
Overview
Overview
Soft rot is a common disease affecting mostly fruits and vegetables. It can occur while plants are growing but is more common once the produce has been harvested. The most susceptible plants are fleshy vegetables like tomatoes, lettuce, sweet potato, capsicum, bananas, eggplants, squash, cucumber, avocados, and potatoes.
Many succulents are also susceptible to soft rot. This is especially the case when the plant has received some damage, as bacteria enters the succulent through the open wound.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
Initially, the disease is spotted in the form of soft, wet, cream-to-tan necrotic spots. These may appear on fruits and vegetables, including tubers, or succulent leaves and stems. The spots are surrounded by a dark brown to black ring.
As the disease progresses, the plant part becomes infected with a soft and slimy rot that has a foul odor. A dark discoloration can be seen internally. Potatoes, sweet potatoes and other tubers will have evidence of this rot under the skin. Fruits like avocados exhibit a dark metallic sheen on the outside and the flesh is grey to black. The flesh also has a putrid odor.
Succulents with soft rot will have watery-looking scabs on the stems or leaves. As the disease progresses, the spots will turn brown to black and they may have a foul-smelling discharge. For succulents with shorter stems, it may be more difficult to notice the earliest symptoms, and soft rot may not be noticed until the plant has already begun rotting from the center.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
Soft rot is caused by the bacteria Erwinia cartovorum. This bacteria secretes enzymes that decompose the cell wall structure of the plant. This destroys the plant tissue and causes the plant or its fruit to rot.
The bacteria lives in crop debris as well as soil and water, including the ocean. It infects plants through open wounds, including those caused by overwatering in succulents. It is normally spread by splashing water, insects, and wind. Infection is worse in hot and humid weather.
Solutions
Solutions
Once soft rot appears, it is difficult to control.
For minor issues of soft rot where only a small area is affected:
  1. Reduce watering. Only water when the soil is completely dry.
  2. Prune away affected tissue. Remove all dead and/or rotting roots and leaves. Use sterile tools.
  3. Repot using new soil. If potted, repot the plant with new soil. Be sure to use a pot with proper drainage holes.
For severe cases when a large amount of tissue is infected or black:
  1. Dispose of plant. Severely infected plants will not recover. Dispose of the plant so that other nearby plants are not infected. Do not compost the infected plant.
Prevention
Prevention
To prevent soft rot, do the following:
  1. Avoid overwatering. Only water succulents when soil is almost dry. Make sure potted plants are in containers with drainage holes.
  2. Ensure proper airflow. Do not crowd plants together. Make sure there is adequate space between plants to allow for airflow.
  3. Source healthy plants. Avoid introducing plants with soft rot into your garden or home. Buy plants for a reliable source and check for signs of soft rot.
  4. Sterilize pruning tools. Soft rot bacteria enter plants where tissue is cut. Make sure to sterilize pruning tools before using.
  5. Control pests. Pests can spread soft rot bacteria when they feed on plants. Controlling pests will help stop the spread of soft rot.
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Leaf rot
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Leaf rot
This pathogen can cause the leaves to rot.
Overview
Overview
Leaf rot is very common among both house plants and garden plants. It affects foliage and occurs mainly when the leaves become wet due to rain or misting by the gardener. The cause is fungal disease and this is facilitated by the fungal spores adhering to wet leaves then penetrating the leaf and expanding rapidly. Damp conditions and poor air circulation will increase chances of infection taking place. Another factor are leaves that are damaged or have been penetrated by sap sucking insects that facilitate plant penetration.
Symptom Analysis
Symptom Analysis
  1. Spores are able to cling to a damp leaf and penetrate, often through an existing wound.
  2. A small dark brown mark appears which expands rapidly as sporulation starts to take place.
  3. Quite quickly these bull's eye like circles can link together and the whole leaf turns dark and loses texture.
  4. Leaf drop occurs.
Disease Cause
Disease Cause
These symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection invading the plant. Bacteria from many sources in the environment (air, water, soil, diseased plants) enter a plant through wounds, or in some cases the stomata when they are open. Once inside the leaf tissue, the bacteria feed and reproduce quickly, breaking down healthy leaves.
Bacterial infections threaten most plant species, and are more prominent in wet weather that more easily transfers the bacteria from plant to plant, or from soil to plant.
Solutions
Solutions
Bacterial infections need to be treated quickly to prevent the spread to neighboring, healthy plants, potentially wiping out large sections of your indoor or outdoor garden.
In mild cases: Use sterilized (10% bleach solution) pruning shears or scissors to remove any infected plant parts, making sure to dispose of them off site. Use a copper-based bactericide to treat the unaffected foliage, as well as the soil, and neighboring plants. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
In severe cases, where more than half the leaves are affected: Remove all of the infected plants from the garden, disposing of them off site. Treat the soil and neighboring plants using a copper-based bactericide. Follow the manufacturer’s rate and timing directions found on the product label.
Prevention
Prevention
  1. Clean up garden debris at the end of the season, especially if it contains any diseased plant tissue. Diseases can overwinter from season to season and infect new plants.
  2. Avoid overhead watering to prevent transferring pathogens from one plant to another, and to keep foliage dry.
  3. Mulch around the base of plants to prevent soil-borne bacteria from splashing up onto uninfected plants.
  4. Sterilize cutting tools using a 10% bleach solution when gardening and moving from one plant to another.
  5. Do not work in your garden when it is wet.
  6. Rotate crops to prevent the buildup of bacteria in one site due to continuous cropping.
  7. Use a copper or streptomycin-containing bactericide in early spring to prevent infection. Read label directions carefully as they are not suitable for all plants.
  8. Ensure plants are well spaced and thin leaves on densely leaved plants so that air circulation is maximised.
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More About Calico Hearts

Spread
Spread
10 cm
Bloom Time
Bloom Time
Spring, Summer
Flower Color
Flower Color
Yellow
Green
Leaf Color
Leaf Color
Green
Red
Flower Size
Flower Size
1.5 cm
Plant Height
Plant Height
15 cm
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Common Problems

Why do my plant's leaves turn yellow and wither?

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It's a natural phenomenon for leaves turn yellow and wither. Don't panic. If new buds turn yellow and withered, it is abnormal, and may be caused by lack of some mineral fertilizer or by sunburn.

Why do its leaves wrinkle?

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Wrinkled leaves are generally due to water shortage. When a succulent lacks water, wrinkled or shriveled leaves reminds you to water them.

Why does it have a very tall stem but few leaves?

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Lack of light can lead to a weak, tall stem, fewer leaves, and vulnerableness of plant tissue, which makes the plant prone to injury. Place the succulent in a well-lit area and it will slowly improve over time.
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Lighting
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Indoor
Indoor
Outdoor
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Requirements
Full sun
Ideal
Above 6 hours sunlight
Watch how sunlight gracefully moves through your garden, and choose spots that provide the perfect balance of light and shade for your plants, ensuring their happiness.
Essentials
Calico hearts appreciates lavish exposure to light, contributing significantly to its robust growth. Its origin environment offers relentless lighting. Insufficient light could weaken it; excessive exposure may scorch it. It doesn't necessitate any shade protection. Its sunlight requirement doesn't fluctuate between different growth stages.
Preferred
Tolerable
Unsuitable
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Artificial lighting
Indoor plants require adequate lighting for optimal growth. When natural sunlight is insufficient, particularly in winter or in less sunny spaces, artificial lights offer a vital solution, promoting faster, healthier growth.
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Indoor plants require adequate lighting for optimal growth. When natural sunlight is insufficient, particularly in winter or in less sunny spaces, artificial lights offer a vital solution, promoting faster, healthier growth.
1. Choose the right type of artificial light: LED lights are a popular choice for indoor plant lighting because they can be customized to provide the specific wavelengths of light that your plants need.
Full sun plants need 30-50W/sq ft of artificial light, partial sun plants need 20-30W/sq ft, and full shade plants need 10-20W/sq ft.
2. Determine the appropriate distance: Place the light source 12-36 inches above the plant to mimic natural sunlight.
3. Determine the duration: Mimic the length of natural daylight hours for your plant species. most plants need 8-12 hours of light per day.
Important Symptoms
Insufficient light
Calico hearts is a beloved choice for indoor gardening, and they require strong light to thrive. However, when placed in rooms with suboptimal lighting, they may develop symptoms of light deficiency.
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(Symptom details and solutions)
Small leaves
New leaves may grow smaller in size compared to the previous ones once they have matured.
Leggy or sparse growth
The spaces between leaves or stems of your Calico hearts may become longer, resulting in a thin and stretched-out appearance. This can make the plant look sparse and weak, and it may easily break or lean due to its own weight.
Faster leaf drop
When plants are exposed to low light conditions, they tend to shed older leaves early to conserve resources. Within a limited time, these resources can be utilized to grow new leaves until the plant's energy reserves are depleted.
Slower or no new growth
Calico hearts enters a survival mode when light conditions are poor, which leads to a halt in leaf production. As a result, the plant's growth becomes delayed or stops altogether.
Lighter-colored new leaves
Insufficient sunlight can cause leaves to develop irregular color patterns or appear pale. This indicates a lack of chlorophyll and essential nutrients.
Solutions
1. To ensure optimal growth, gradually move plants to a sunnier location each week, until they receive at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily. Use a south-facing window and keep curtains open during the day for maximum sunlight exposure and nutrient accumulation.2. To provide additional light for your plant, consider using artificial light if it's large or not easily movable. Keep a desk or ceiling lamp on for at least 8 hours daily, or invest in professional plant grow lights for ample light.
Excessive light
Calico hearts require strong light to thrive, and some are remarkably resilient to sun exposure, rarely suffering from sunburn.
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(Symptom details and solutions)
Chlorosis
Chlorosis is a condition where the plant's leaves lose their green color and turn yellow. This is due to the breakdown of chlorophyll from excessive sunlight, which negatively affects the plant's ability to photosynthesize.
Sunscald
Sunscald occurs when the plant's leaves or stems are damaged by intense sunlight exposure. It appears as pale, bleached, or necrotic areas on the plant tissue and can reduce the plant's overall health.
Leaf Curling
Leaf curling is a symptom where leaves curl or twist under extreme sunlight conditions. This is a defense mechanism used by the plant to reduce its surface area exposed to sunlight, minimizing water loss and damage.
Wilting
Wilting occurs when a plant loses turgor pressure and its leaves and stems begin to droop. Overexposure to sunlight can cause wilting by increasing the plant's water loss through transpiration, making it difficult for the plant to maintain adequate hydration.
Leaf Scorching
Leaf scorching is a symptom characterized by the appearance of brown, dry, and crispy edges or patches on leaves due to excessive sunlight. This can lead to a reduction in photosynthetic capacity and overall plant health.
Solutions
1. Move your plant to the optimal position where it can receive abundant sunlight but also have some shade. An east-facing window is an ideal choice as the morning sunlight is gentler. This way, your plant can enjoy ample sunlight while reducing the risk of sunburn.2. It is recommended to trim off any completely dehydrated or withered parts of the plant.
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Temperature
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Indoor
Indoor
Outdoor
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Requirements
Ideal
Tolerable
Unsuitable
Just like people, each plant has its own preferences. Learn about your plants' temperature needs and create a comforting environment for them to flourish. As you care for your plants, your bond with them will deepen. Trust your intuition as you learn about their temperature needs, celebrating the journey you share. Lovingly monitor the temperature around your plants and adjust their environment as needed. A thermometer can be your ally in this heartfelt endeavor. Be patient and gentle with yourself as you explore your plants' temperature needs. Cherish your successes, learn from challenges, and nurture your garden with love, creating a haven that reflects the warmth of your care.
Essentials
Calico hearts is native to climates where temperatures often range from 68 to 100℉ (20 to 38℃). It thrives when maintained within this temperature range. In colder seasons, it is recommended to incrementally reduce temperatures to mimic its natural habitat.
Regional wintering strategies
Calico hearts is a heat-loving plant that gradually stops growing and enters a dormant state during the winter. When the outdoor temperature drops below {Tolerable_growing_temperature_min}, it should be moved indoors for cultivation. Choose a location near a south-facing window to provide as much sunlight as possible. If there is insufficient natural light, supplemental lighting can be used. When the temperature falls below {Suitable_growth_temperature_min}, the plant's growth slows down, and watering should be reduced or stopped to prevent root rot. For Calico hearts grown outdoors, watering should be completely halted during low temperatures. If feasible, you can set up a temporary greenhouse for insulation or use materials such as plastic film or fabric to wrap the plant during cold temperatures.
Important Symptoms
Low Temperature
Calico hearts thrives in high temperatures and is not tolerant of low temperatures. It grows best when the temperature is above {Suitable_growth_temperature_min}. During winter, it should be kept above {Tolerable_growing_temperature_min}. When the temperature falls below {Limit_growth_temperature}, the plant may become weak, wilt, and be prone to root rot. In cases of mild frost damage, there may not be any initial symptoms, but after a week, the plant will gradually wither.
Solutions
Trim off the frostbitten areas, paying attention to whether the roots have rotted. If the roots have rotted, they need to be cut off, and the plant can be propagated through cuttings. Immediately move indoors to a warm environment and place the plant near a south-facing window to ensure ample sunlight. If there is insufficient light, you can use supplemental lighting.
High Temperature
During summer, Calico hearts should be kept below {Suitable_growth_temperature_max}. When the temperature exceeds {Tolerable_growing_temperature_max}, the plant's growth will cease, it will experience water loss, wilting, and becomes more susceptible to sunburn.
Solutions
Remove the sunburned and rotten parts. Shield the plant from afternoon sunlight until it recovers and starts growing again. For plants with root rot, stop watering until new roots begin to emerge.
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