How to Grow Kalanchoe - Planting & Caring

By Sharon & Team   /   Succulents Category   /   2023

Kalanchoe, also known as the chandelier plant or mother-in-law's tongue plant, is a succulent plant that is native to Madagascar. The plant has fleshy, green leaves that are arranged in a rosette pattern. The leaves are edged with red and have small, white flowers that bloom in the summer. Kalanchoe is a easy plant to grow and is drought tolerant. The plant can be propagated by stem cuttings or by seed.

How to Grow Kalanchoe - Planting & Caring

Growing Easiness

Is it easy to grow Kalanchoe plant? Common Kalanchoe (Kalanchoe blossfeldiana) is easy to grow as a houseplant. It blooms prolifically and flowers last a long time, so it's great for adding color to your home. Kalanchoes are available in a wide range of colors, including red, pink, orange, and yellow. The plant is native to Madagascar and grows in a rosette form. The leaves are thick and fleshy, and the plant produces small, bell-shaped flowers.

Plant Size

How big can it be? Common Kalanchoe plants are short, has a compact rosette shape and only grow up to 6 cm in height. Some Kalanchoe species can grow as tall as 2 m, but these are less common.Kalanchoe plants come in a wide range of colors, including shades of green, red, pink, and yellow.

Growth Rate

How fast is the growth? Since this plant is a succulent, it can store water in its leaves. This means that the plant can go for a long time without water and still survive. The Kalanchoe plant can also reproduce asexually, which means that it does not need a partner to reproduce. The plant can do this by producing plantlets, which are small plantlets that grow on the leaves of the plant. The plantlets will eventually fall off the leaves and grow into new plants.

Kalanchoe Basic Knowledge

Plant Form Succulent
Family Crassulaceae
Origin Distribution area – from the Arabian Peninsula to South Africa

Lifespan, Perennial or Annuals

How long is the lifespan? Sometimes, a Kalanchoe will outgrow its pot and need to be transplanted to a larger one. Other times, the plant will become leggy, with long stems and sparse foliage. When this happens, it's time for a rejuvenation treatment.

Ideal Temperature

What is the ideal temperature? Since the plant does not like the cold, in winter it is desirable to keep it at a temperature not higher than 59 ° F. If the temperature in the room is lower, it is necessary to move the plant away from the radiators. Also, the plant does not like too high temperatures in autumn and winter, so flower buds are not laid.


What about the humidity? Common Kalanchoe does not require special care, but it is better to spray it in hot weather, especially if the plant is in a dry room. The optimum temperature for kalanchoe is 18-22 degrees Celsius. If the temperature is lower, the plant may lose its decorative effect. When the temperature rises above 30 degrees, the leaves of the plant begin to fade. Also, you need to know that kalanchoe does not tolerate drafts.

Light Requirement

What amount of light this plant needed? So, for better flowering, it is advisable to provide the plant with a duration of illumination not more than 9 hours starting from August (the rest of the day the plant can be covered with a dark cap).

Soil Composition

What is good soil for Kalanchoe? If you want to mix your own potting soil for your Kalanchoe plants, use 3 parts coarse sand or perlite, 2 parts turf ground, 2 parts humus, and 2 parts peat. This mixture will provide good drainage for your plants and prevent the soil from becoming too heavy.

Watering Time

How much I must water Kalanchoe? Since the natural environment of Kalanchoe is a hot and dry climate, it is used to long periods without water. That is why, in the summer, the top layer of soil should be allowed to dry out well between waterings, which will be approximately every 5-10 days. In November and February, the plant will need to be watered only 1-2 times a month, using soft water. Any excess water in the pan should be drained.

Fertilizing and Nutritient

About fertilizer. Since this succulent does not have a resting period and continues to grow throughout the year, it is necessary to provide it with the appropriate amount of nutrients. During the growing season, which lasts from March to October, Kalanchoe is fed every 2-3 weeks with a complex mineral fertilizer for cacti. You can use ready-made mixes or make your own by mixing in equal parts: superphosphate, potassium sulfate and ammonium nitrate. For flowering plants in winter, a half dose of fertilizer is applied.


How to reproduce Kalanchoe? Although the plant can be easily propagated by apical shoots 8-10 cm long, it is best to use heteroauxin when taking the shoots in the spring from the current growth branches. To root the cuttings, place them in peat and sand under polyethylene, and then ventilate them periodically at a temperature of 68-71.6 degrees Fahrenheit. You may need to spray the sand from time to time. Once the cuttings have rooted, transplant them into separate pots and place them in an area with bright scattered light. After the third leaves have appeared, prick the tips of the shoots. The plant can also reproduce by seeds, which are rather small. To sow the seeds, mix leaf land and sand together, then place the seeds on top without sprinkling any earth on them. The seeds should be germinated at a temperature of 68-71.6 degrees Fahrenheit, and the shoots should be exposed to light. The second pick is usually held in early summer.


Why Kalanchoe won't bloom? Sometimes, the flowers of Kalanchoe can be found in white, yellow, red, and pink hues. They are tubular or campanulate in shape and often appear in inflorescences. The plant typically blooms from November to March.

Transfer or Repotting

How much I must water Kalanchoe? Because the plant blooms in the spring, it is best to replant it after it has flowered. You can tell if your Kalanchoe needs to be replanted if it starts to look crowded in its pot or if the leaves begin to turn yellow. If the roots are pot-bound, gently loosen them before replanting. Choose a pot that is only slightly larger than the current one and use a well-draining potting mix. Be sure to water the plant well after replanting.

Caring The Kalanchoe

How to care the plant? The Kalanchoe of Blossfeld variety requires less frequent re-blooming. Sometimes the plant need a rest, during which they should be exposed to bright light. After the plant flowers, cut the flower spike when half the flowers have withered to stimulate new peduncle growth. When watering Kalanchoe, avoid getting water on the leaves and center of the bush to prevent parasitic fungi growth. This plant species is best groomed by periodically pricking the tips of growing shoots. The leaves of Kalanchoe are quite fragile and easily broken.

Pests & Challenges

What is the challenge when caring Kalanchoe plant? While it is possible to grow a Kalanchoe at home, there are a number of things that can go wrong. For one, it is affected by spider mites, mealybugs, scutes, aphids. Flowering plants are prone to powdery mildew (moldy and blackened areas on the leaves). Root rot is possible with excessive watering. If the lower leaves turn yellow and fall off, most often this is the natural aging process of the plant. However, the lower leaves can turn yellow and dry up due to insufficient soil moisture. Leaves may fade and the stems and sinuses of the leaves turn black and rotten as a result of the appearance of the fungus, which develops due to overmoistening of the soil. Plants are often stretched due to lack of light. The plant may not bloom due to high temperatures in autumn and winter. Sometimes, strong growth and lack of flowering can be associated with an excess of fertilizer in the soil. Leaves most often wilt because of waterlogging. If after flowering, new leaves develop that are very small, this indicates the need for a transplant. Slow growth of the plant can be associated with a lack of nutrition. Sometimes, a plant withers for no apparent reason because of the development of the rootbug, which can be seen only when transplanting the plant.

Toxic & Poisonous Type

Are Kalanchoe poisonous? Because Kalanchoe plants contain bufadienolides, which are cardiac glycosides that can cause heart arrhythmias if ingested, they are considered toxic to humans and animals. Symptoms of toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea, and heart arrhythmias. If you suspect your pet has ingested a Kalanchoe plant, please contact your veterinarian or the Pet Poison Helpline for treatment recommendations.