Aeonium Canariense (Updated 2023)

Aeonium canariense, commonly known as the Giant Velvet Rose or Canary Aeonium, is a stunning succulent plant that can bring a touch of elegance to any garden or indoor space. With its large, fleshy, velvety leaves arranged in beautiful rosettes, this plant is a visual delight. In this article, I will guide you through the care and propagation of A. canariense, providing you with all the information you need to ensure the health and success of this unique succulent.

Characteristics of Aeonium Canariense ‘Giant Velvet Rose’

Aeonium canariense is a member of the Crassulaceae family and the Aeonium genus. It is native to the island of Tenerife in the Canary Islands, giving it the common name Canary Aeonium. This succulent can reach a height of about 1 foot (30 cm) and has rosettes that can grow up to 8 inches (20 cm) in diameter. The leaves of A. canariense are large, fleshy, and velvety, with a green color that can turn reddish or pinkish when exposed to direct sunlight.

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Where to Plant Aeonium Canariense

When it comes to planting Aeonium canariense, it’s important to consider its light and temperature requirements. This succulent thrives in partial shade, so it’s best to provide it with a location that receives bright but indirect sunlight. A north-facing window or a south-facing porch with partial shade during midday can be ideal. It’s important to note that A. canariense doesn’t do well in low light conditions, so make sure to provide it with enough brightness.

As for temperature, A. canariense prefers a range of 64°-75° degrees Fahrenheit (18°-24° Celsius). It can tolerate a variety of humidity levels, ranging from 40% to 80%. However, it’s important to ensure that the plant is not exposed to cold drafts, as it can damage the tissue.

Watering Aeonium Canariense

Proper watering is crucial for the health of Aeonium canariense. Although it is a succulent, it has a shallow root system and requires more frequent watering compared to other succulents. During the growing season, water your A. canariense once every week or two, depending on the moisture level of the air and the surrounding environment. Always make sure to allow the soil to dry out between waterings to avoid overwatering, which can lead to root rot. In the summer, when the plant is dormant, it requires very little water unless extreme dry conditions exist. During this period, it’s best to refrain from watering unless the soil is completely dry when you poke a finger into it.

Choosing the Right Soil for Aeonium Canariense

A well-draining soil mixture is essential for the health of Aeonium canariense. The plant prefers sandy loam or a specially formulated succulent soil mix. Adding perlite to the soil mixture can improve drainage and help prevent the soil from becoming waterlogged. It’s important to find the right balance between soil that drains well and retains some moisture. Remember not to confuse moist soil with wet soil, as excessive moisture can lead to root rot.

Fertilizing Aeonium Canariense

Aeonium canariense does not require frequent fertilization. During the growing season, which is typically spring and summer, you can fertilize the plant once every 2-3 weeks with a liquid fertilizer diluted to half-strength. Alternatively, you can use a water-soluble, time-release fertilizer or granular slow-release fertilizer. It’s important not to over-fertilize the plant, as this can cause harm. A. canariense is capable of thriving with minimal fertilization, so it’s best to err on the side of caution and provide it with nutrients sparingly.

Pruning Aeonium Canariense

Pruning Aeonium canariense is not always necessary, as these succulents are self-pruning and can naturally shed dead leaves. However, if you notice any unhealthy or damaged parts of the plant, you can consider pruning them. It’s important to use sharp clippers or scissors when pruning, as Aeoniums have brittle tissue in their stems. Late spring or early autumn, before the onset of frost, is the best time for pruning. Be mindful not to remove too many leaves, as they serve as an energy store for the plant.

Common Pests and Diseases

While Aeonium canariense is relatively pest and disease-free, there are a few issues you may encounter. Aphids, spider mites, scale bugs, powdery mildew, and Pythium fungus can affect the health of the plant. To prevent these problems, provide a healthy and clean environment for the succulent. Avoid overwatering, ensure good air circulation, and remove any dead leaves or branches promptly. If necessary, you can control pests by using a strong stream of water or applying appropriate pesticides.

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Winter Care for Aeonium Canariense

Aeonium canariense is not cold hardy, so it requires special care during winter, especially in colder climates. In cold regions, it’s best to bring the plant indoors and place it in a well-lit area, such as a south-facing window. If the plant is struggling indoors, you may consider providing supplemental light with grow lights. During winter, A. canariense requires less frequent watering. Water the plant only when the top inch of soil is dry to the touch. Additionally, if you’re growing A. canariense outdoors in winter, provide protection from the cold by using a winter mulch and covering the plant.

Propagation Methods

Aeonium canariense can be propagated through stem cuttings, offsets, or seeds.

Stem Cuttings: Take a stem cutting from the mother plant, ensuring it has at least one leaf. Allow the cutting to callous for a day or two before planting it in well-draining succulent soil. Water the cutting sparingly to keep the soil moist but not wet. Within a few weeks or months, the cutting should root and start growing.

Offsets: A. canariense produces small offsets around the base of the plant. Gently remove these offsets and allow them to dry for a day or two before replanting them in well-draining soil. The offsets should develop roots and grow into new plants over time.

Seeds: Soak the fresh seeds in water overnight to soften their outer coating. Plant the seeds in well-draining soil mixed with perlite or other water-retaining crystals. Place the planted seeds in a location with plenty of sunlight. Germination may take several weeks or months, so patience is required.

Is Aeonium Canariense Toxic?

No, A. canariense ‘Giant Velvet Rose’ is not toxic to humans or animals. However, it’s always a good practice to wear gloves when handling any plants to avoid any potential skin irritation.

In conclusion, A. canariense ‘Giant Velvet Rose’ is a beautiful and versatile succulent that can thrive with proper care and attention. By providing the right lighting conditions, watering appropriately, using well-draining soil, and maintaining a suitable temperature and humidity level, you can ensure the health and longevity of this stunning succulent. With its unique characteristics and propagation methods, the Aeonium canariense ‘Giant Velvet Rose’ can be a delightful addition to your indoor or outdoor space.

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