Gasteria Little Warty is a succulent plant native to South Africa. The plant’s care needs are similar to that of Haworthias. Gasteria is a low-maintenance houseplant, like the Aloe plant, making it a great choice for beginners.
Gasteria Little Warty Appearance
The Little Warty succulent grows to a height of between 5 and 8 inches (13 to 20 cm) tall and 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 cm) wide.
This succulent plant has a rosette growth habit, growing offsets out from a central point. Gasteria’s fleshy leaves are dark green with lighter, silvery-green variegation.
The plant gets its name from the small, white bumps that grow on the foliage. These “warts” are tubercles that store water, as most succulents do. Blooms of red, pink, or orange form in clusters at the end of 12-inch (30 cm) long spikes.
Light Requirements of the Little Warty Succulent
Gasteria prefer bright, indirect light, though they will tolerate partial shade. A spot in a sunny room, several feet from a window, is ideal. If placing the plant close to a window, ensure the light is filtered through sheer curtains to avoid burning the foliage.
Watering Your Gasteria
Gasteria Little Warty, like most succulents, is drought tolerant. Follow the soak and dry method of watering. Allow the soil’s top few inches to dry completely between watering, then water until the moisture runs out the pot’s drainage holes. Watering once per week is a good start, but let the soil’s moisture be your guide. Use lukewarm water, as cold water shocks the plant and may cause leaf drop. Avoid watering onto the foliage as excess water on the leaves promotes leaf fungus.
Soil and Fertilizer Requirements
The Gasteria plant grows well in moist soil types, but it needs to be well-draining. Use a succulent soil mix amended with perlite or coarse sand for best results. Choose an unglazed, terra cotta or ceramic pot to allow excess soil moisture to wick away. The plant’s root system is shallow, so avoid deep pots that encourage overwatering. Gasteria Little Warty is a low feeder, requiring only a low-nitrogen, succulent fertilizer. Feed your plant, during the spring and summer, once per month. Reduce feedings in the fall and winter to once every two months.
Temperature and Humidity Levels for Gasteria
The Little Warty succulent prefers warm temperatures and average humidity levels. The plant is not cold hardy, so avoid temperatures below 30 F (-1.1 C). A range of between 50 to 80 F (10 to 26.6 C) works well, with optimal growth occurring when exposed to the higher end.
Propagating Your Gasteria Little Warty
Leaf cuttings or division are the recommended methods of successful propagation. For the cutting method, choose a stem at least a few inches long. Cut the stem away from the mother plant, including some of the roots, with a sharp and sterile knife. Plant the cutting in a succulent soil mixture, keeping the soil moist but not soggy.
To propagate by division, remove the mother plant from its pot and divide the plant into two or more sections. Choose natural separations in the roots system, ensuring each new plant has at least two leaves and intact roots. Plant each new plant in a succulent soil mix. Choose a warm location with bright, indirect sunlight and keep the soil moist until the plants become established.
Common Pests and Diseases of Gasteria
Gasteria Little Warty is susceptible to leaf fungus and root rot. Leaf fungus presents as black spots on the foliage, a result of water sitting on the leaves for extended periods of time. The plant has a natural defense against fungus and seals off the wounds on its own. Should the fungal infection advance, remove infected leaves and treat the plant with a houseplant fungicide.
Mealybugs are the most common pest to affect Gasteria plants. The insects feed on the plant and leave behind honeydew, which turns into black, sooty mold if not treated. For advanced infestations, treatment with an insecticidal soap is effective. Conduct a patch test first, applying the soap to a small area of the plant and checking for adverse effects. If the plant shows damage, remove the mealybugs manually with a cotton swab soaked in rubbing alcohol.
Gasteria Little Warty has an odd name and an even odder appearance, but don’t let that keep you from adding this adorable plant to your collection. Adaptable to most household environments, Gasteria’s care needs are simple and easy to follow.
Gasteria Little Warty FAQ
Gasteria grows well in climates within USDA zones 9 to 11. For humid climates, perform regular foliage checks for signs of fungal infections.
Yellow, wilting leaves may be a sign of root rot, caused by overwatering. To confirm rot, remove the plant from its pot and inspect the roots. Infected roots will be black and mushy. If only a few roots are affected, trim them away and repot the plant in a clean pot with fresh soil. Advanced cases are difficult to reverse and the plant may not survive.
No, Gasteria plants are considered non-toxic to pets.
Yes, Gasteria plants are from a genus considered to be relatively rare.
Repot your plant every two years to refresh the soil and promote healthy growth.