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Kalanchoe marmorata (Penwiper)

Penwiper, Penwiper Plant, Spotted Kalanchoe, Kalanchoe somaliensis

AGM Award
Kalanchoe marmorata, Penwiper

Kalanchoe marmorata is an attractive succulent, ideal for those looking to add a touch of exotic elegance to their plant collection. Its low maintenance and drought tolerance make it a popular choice for various gardening styles.

Kalanchoe marmorata: An In-depth Look

Kalanchoe marmorata, also known as Penwiper Plant, is a visually striking succulent. It is prized for its unique, mottled foliage and upright growth. It exhibits a patterned appearance with white or pale markings on its green leaves, resembling marble.

Native: Native to northeastern Africa, it thrives in rocky and arid environments, which contribute to its drought-tolerant nature.

Plant Type and Habit: It is a succulent plant with an upright, bushy growth habit. The plant forms a rosette shape with its leaves and grows taller as it matures.

Size: While its typical height is around 12 to 18 inches (30-45 cm), with adequate care, space, and time, it has the potential to grow taller. In optimal growing conditions, it can reach up to 4 feet (about 1.2 meters) in height. The spread of the plant can also be proportionate to its height, offering a substantial presence in a garden or as a potted plant.

Flowers: Kalanchoe marmorata produces clusters of tubular, white or pinkish flowers on tall stems, adding ornamental value. The blooming period typically occurs in late winter to early spring.

Foliage: The foliage is the most striking feature, with broad, oval leaves marked with distinct white or pale patterns.

Uses: Ideal as an ornamental indoor plant, in rock gardens, or as part of a succulent collection. Its unique foliage makes it a great decorative element.

Award: Recipient of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society.

Hardiness: It’s hardy in USDA zones 10-11 and prefers a warm, dry climate.

Toxicity: Kalanchoe species can be toxic if ingested, especially to pets like cats and dogs.

Deer and Rabbit: It is resistant to deer and rabbits.

Drought: Highly drought-tolerant, reflecting its adaptation to dry, rocky environments.

Invasiveness: Kalanchoe marmorata is not considered invasive and is typically well-contained in garden settings.

Benefits: The main benefits are ornamental, with its patterned foliage adding aesthetic appeal. It’s also low-maintenance and suitable for xeriscaping.

Growing Tips

Light: Prefers bright, indirect sunlight. Can tolerate some direct sunlight but avoid harsh midday sun to prevent leaf burn.

Soil: Requires well-draining, sandy or cactus potting mix. Good aeration is crucial to avoid root rot.

Water: WWater sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out completely between waterings. Reduce watering in the winter during the plant’s dormant period.

Fertilizer: Fertilize with a diluted, balanced fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer). Fertilize once a month or as per the product instructions.

Pruning: Pruning is generally not needed but can be done to shape the plant or remove dead leaves.

Propagation: Easily propagated from leaf cuttings or offsets. Plant the cuttings or offsets in well-draining soil and keep them slightly moist.

Pests and Diseases: Watch for pests like mealybugs, aphids, or spider mites. Be vigilant about root rot, which can occur in overly moist conditions.

Requirements

Hardiness 10 - 11
Plant Type Cactus & Succulents
Plant Family Crassulaceae
Genus Kalanchoe
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 1' - 4'
(30cm - 120cm)
Spread 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spacing 12" - 18"
(30cm - 50cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Plant of Merit
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Deer, Rabbit
Garden Uses Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, Gravel and Rock Garden
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Alternative Plants to Consider

Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi (Lavender Scallops)
Kalanchoe daigremontiana (Mother of Thousands)
Kalanchoe pumila (Flower Dust Plant)
Kalanchoe beharensis ‘Fang’ (Felt Plant)
Kalanchoe marnieriana (Marnier’s Kalanchoe)
Kalanchoe tomentosa (Panda Plant)

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While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.
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Requirements

Hardiness 10 - 11
Plant Type Cactus & Succulents
Plant Family Crassulaceae
Genus Kalanchoe
Exposure Full Sun, Partial Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Early, Mid, Late)
Summer (Early, Mid, Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 1' - 4'
(30cm - 120cm)
Spread 1' - 2'
(30cm - 60cm)
Spacing 12" - 18"
(30cm - 50cm)
Maintenance Low
Water Needs Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Plant of Merit
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Deer, Rabbit
Garden Uses Patio And Containers
Garden Styles Mediterranean Garden, Gravel and Rock Garden
How Many Plants
Do I Need?
Explore Great Plant Combination Ideas
Kalanchoe
Guides with
Kalanchoe
Not sure which Kalanchoe to pick?
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