ASK THE BOTANIST
As a trained environmental educator, with a specialty in marine biology, I find BOTANY - or the study of plants - to be an exciting yet at times unfamiliar endeavor for me. So when I have plant related questions (which is often) I have one friend I turn to most, the knowledgeable ZOEY MANSON!
Zoey and I often collaborate on botanical styling, art and plant care, and now I am thrilled to share her wisdom with you all! Every month we will feature a Plant of the Month that we will discuss in more depth. Scroll Down to see the this month's featured Plant of the Month!
We hope you find this page a helpful place to ask your plant related questions, request how-to tutorials, as well as, your favorite plants to feature. Zoey and I are excited to be offering this service to you all, sharing our love for plants and plant wisdoms!
ask us anything!
I began working with plants at Briggs Trees Company, in San Marcos, CA, where I was fully immersed in plant identification authenticating their entire inventory database. From there, I threw myself into planted art, landscape design and customer service working at the beautiful Barrels and Branches nursery in Encinitas, Ca. I am now studying and working full time as an ethnobotanist (someone who studies how people from different cultures use plants) at Mira Costa College in Oceanside, Ca.
PLANT OF THE MONTH:
echeveria perle von nurnberg
all about echeveria perle von nurnberg
This spring in San DIego has been particularly breathtaking due to all the rains we’ve had so far this year. WIth all the beautiful and vibrant colors gracing us this Spring, I thought it quite appropriate to share more information on one of the most beautiful pastel colored succulent out there - the Echeveria Perle Von Nurnberg.
This beautiful variety of rosette shaped succulents, possesses a somewhat dusty bluish gray color with purple margins - in bright sun the entire plants becomes becomes a deep yet pastel purple color, which is truly beautiful to behold. Perle’s also produce a graceful abundance of bloom stalks during the Spring months, with brightly colored coral flowers.
The Perle von Nurnberg was cultivated in the 1930s by a German botanist by the name of Richard Graessner who was from Perleberg, Germany. It is a hybrid between an Echeveria gibbiflora and Echeveria elegans, and it is one of the most popular purple succulents on the market to this day!
caring for your echeveria perle von nurnberg:
Like with most echeveria the perle von nurnberg requires approximately 6 hours of bright yet indirect sunlight. These are not recommended for indoor growth unless they are placed directly beneath a bright window or a grow light, as these plants will very quickly stretch, or etoliate, when not getting enougth sunlight. Be sure to acclimate these plants to full sun, as they can get sunburnt in bright direct sunlight if not already exposed. These plants do seem to stretch and sometimes even look a bit damaged with age so it is recommended to clip the rosettes off the stem after a few years in order to spur on new rosette growth from the remaining stem, as well as increase energy to the original rosette that had been clipped and can be replanted.
The Echeveria Perle von Nurnberg, like most succulents, prefers to allow it’s soil to go completely dry in between waterings. During the hotter and drier summer months, these pastel beauties do require a bit more water and you will see their leaves begin to pucker and wrinkle when they need more hydration. As with most echeveria, be cautious when watering, so as to ensure you are not allowing standing water to sit within the rosette, since this might lead to fungal infections or rot. If possible, water these succulents from underneath, or by aiming the water at the root zone, as opposed to the leaves. Do not allow the roots to sit in soggy soil for too long, as they can lead to root rot.
All echeveria are prone to pests like mealybugs and scales. Remove the older, dried out leaves around the base of the plant because the leaf litter may often become a haven for pests. If you start to notice soggy and dark leaves near the base, these are the first signs of overwatering and possible rot. Be sure to remove the discolored leaves and check for signs of further rot (blackened stems or leaves). You can halt rot from overtaking your entire plant by clipping off the rosette, removing the rotting stem and then replanting the rosette in dry soil (or pumice). Always wait 1-2 weeks before watering any newly planted clippings, to provide opportunity for new roots to grow.
thanks for reading!