Haworthia Fasciata, or the zebra succulent plant as its most commonly known, is arguable the most snazzy-looking plant there is. These succulents are immensely popular for their low maintenance requirements and striking appearance.
The zebra plant can be identified by its horizontal white stripes and spikey leaves. Like the animal it is named after, the succulent is native to South Africa but can now be found all over the world as decorative houseplants.
Belonging to the genus Haworthia, these plants are designed to withstand high amounts of sunlight and minimal rainfall. Like most succulents, its thick fleshy leaves retain enough water to help it get through considerably long dry spells, without much harm.
The zebra plant consists of two distinct species-Hawthoria fasciata and hawthoria attenuate. The main difference between the two is that Hawthoria attenuates carry white markings on both sides of their leaves while hawthoria Fasciata has smooth, mark-free, inner leaves. The latter, which this article is about, is also considered to be rarer.
Caring for a Haworthia Fasciata
These succulents are not that hard to care for and can do pretty well on their own. However, caring for a zebra plant indoors does require some special care and attention. Let’s discuss below
1. Light and temperature
Like any other succulent, Haworthia Fasciata is sun lovers. However, they prefer indirect rather than direct sunlight. This is also why they’re often found in spots of shade in their native sub-tropical environment.
Indoor zebra plants grow best situated on east or westward-facing windowsill, receiving a decent amount of bright light a couple of hours each day. If you’re planning on keeping the plant outdoors, choose a spot that receives only a partial amount of sunlight. 4-6 hours of morning sunshine is ideal.
To ensure your plant is getting the right amount of light, observe it during the first few months. Too much sun will change a zebra plant leaves to a deep red, while insufficient light will result in faded leaves.
Haworthia Fasciata is also not considered cold hardy plants. They cannot handle temperature colder than 30F. If you live in an area with cold winters its best to bring them indoors during this period.
Watering succulents, according to the right schedule, cannot be stressed upon enough. Zebra plants should be wet, just like most other succulents, through the “soak and dry method.” This entails allowing the soil to dry before watering it again.
How long it takes for the soil to dry will vary according to where you live and the time of year, so keep a close eye on your plant to check for signs of overwatering or dehydration.
These plants follow an active period in the summer and become dormant through the winter. For this reason, water them a little extra in the summer and a lot less in the winter.
Overwatering is the leading cause of death among these plants. Forgetting to water your zebra plant from time to time won’t kill it, but watering them too often will. Overwatering succulents can also attract mealybugs, which is something you don’t want to deal with.
Using the right soil is crucial to growing a healthy zebra plant. Even if you follow the proper watering schedule, you may still end up killing this succulent if it is planted in the wrong soil type.
Like with all other succulents, you must ensure that the soil is well-draining and provides proper aeration. These plants’ roots are not capable of laying around in wet soil too long. Excess water that isn’t drained will result in root rot and fungal disease.
There is a wide variety of succulent soil available to purchase that will serve these plants well, but if your skeptical or just want to save a little money, you can always make your own. An excellent homemade succulent soil mix should consist of part potting soil, part sand, and part perlite.
Haworthia fasciata don’t need to be fertilized much. Use a diluted fertilizer during the summer season only as that is when the plant most actively absorbs nutrients. Do not feed them in the winter.
Zebra plants aren’t likely to be bothered by many pests. However, be on the lookout for mealybugs and spider mites, they’re the two bugs most commonly found to infect succulents. If you do find them, just spray your plant with 70% isopropyl alcohol.
Zebra plants are slow-growing succulents, so you don’t have to worry about them outgrowing they’re pots that fast. The plants do occasionally need to be repotted If they’ve developed too many offsets or overgrown roots.
The best time to repott these plants is during the spring and summer, using the same soil mix as the original pot.
Propagating new zebra plants is as easy as any other succulent. You can propagate these plants using either their leaves or their offsets.
To propagate through leaves, start by plucking off a healthy leaf. Make sure you the pluck is clean to avoid damaging the leaf. Once you’ve got the leaf, leave it out to dry and scab over. This should take 3-4 days.
Next, put the dry leaf in a pot filled with your preferred brand of the well-draining succulent mix. Water once and watch for new growth to appear before doing so again.
To propagate through offsets, simply cut one off the plant using a sharp knife and follow the same steps mentioned above. Using offsets for propagation is considered to be far more comfortable and has a higher chance of success.
The best time to propagate new zebra plants is during the spring and summer seasons, which are the plant’s natural active growth periods.
Well, all there is to it. Zebra plants are low maintenance succulents requiring minimal watering and ample amounts of indirect sunlight. The plants grow most actively during the summer, which is when you should provide for them the most.
Keep this in mind and your good to go!