Adenium plants are native to regions with poor, gritty soil and hot, sunny climates. You can’t expect the plant to thrive in overly moist soil, in a site with limited light. They are also not frost tolerant and will succumb to a freeze if exposed. The plant will not survive long if exposed to temperatures below 40 degrees F (4 C) but will thrive in temperatures reaching up to 90 degrees F (32 C).
Desert rose succulents like bright light, so a southern window exposure provides enough sun for the plants to flourish and bloom. In the garden, choose a sunny location that has some protection from noonday sun, as this can scorch the foliage.
Soil is very important. Adenium plants should have a mixture of cactus soil with gritty sand or lava rocks for good drainage.
The one thing that will kill these plants quickly is improper watering. They are succulents but are used to rainy periods during which they grow, followed by a dormant, dry period. Match your watering practices to these needs for best success. Keep soil moderately moist in spring and summer, but reduce watering in fall and especially winter when the plant is dormant.
Fertilize with a dilution by half of a 20-20-20 liquid plant food once per month when the plant is actively growing. Do not feed the desert rose during winter.
The most common pests are scale, mealybugs and spider mites. Use cotton balls soaked in alcohol to wipe away these insect rogues.
Be cautious, as Adenium desert rose is in the Dogbane family, with all species bleeding a poisonous sap that can irritate skin and mucous membranes.
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