Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe is a delightful sight to behold. Commonly known as Bryophyllum Fedtschenkoi Variegata or Aurora Borealis, this plant can tell you how it feels as it can exhibit specific changes in its hues once temperature, soil dryness, and the sunlight is being too less or too much.
This succulent shrub grows vertically. It has branches that spread out and root along the ground to form enormous colonies. This plant usually takes over an entire area if left to its own devices over a long period. In ideal conditions, they can grow up to 60 cm tall and distribute their babies via the edges of their leaves.
Other than that, its leaves have lavender-gray-green with cream-colored variegation along the scalloped leaf margins that are dense and luscious. While, in terms of color and form, the leaves of the Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata are both very consistent.
The center of them stays relatively green, but the edges change colors from cream to pink to brilliant pink. Each leaf will be different in color, but they will all have the same round, scalloped edges.
Its flowers are reddish-brown, bell-shaped, and 2 cm long, and they bloom in loose clusters from late spring to early summer on upright stems.
The term Bryophyllum found in this plant’s common name Bryophyllum Fedtschenkoi Variegata was derived from the Greek words “Bryon/bryein” (sprout) and “phyllon” (leaf). Bryophyllums are a member of the Crassulaceae family plant genus and lump with Kalanchoe. The group consists of roughly forty species that are native to Asia, South Africa, and Madagascar.
Taxonomic Hierarchy of Aurora BorealisKalanchoe
Subkingdom: Green Plants
Infrakingdom: Land Plants
Division: Vascular Plants
Subdivision: Seed Plants
Facts to Know About Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe
Scientific name: Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata
Common Name: Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe
Type of Plant: Succulent
Height: 0.50 m
Width: 0.50 m
Flower Color: orange
Blooming Season: early spring until late winter
Light: full to partial shade
Temperature: not frost tolerant
Water: minimal amount
Soil: free-draining, light soil
Fertilizer: liquid or pellet
Propagation: by leaf-cutting
Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe General Care
Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata is a slow-growing succulent. However, even with that fact, it can still be grown indoors or outdoors, for it is a low-maintenance plant.
Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata requires a full to a partial shade of sunlight to thrive, so they should be kept in a light-filled environment.
If you want to grow this succulent in a pot, remember that you should place it next to a window ledge where the morning sun shines and keeps it away from intense heat. While if you are planning to put it in a garden, make sure it gets plenty of sunlight.
The Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata is environmentally sensitive, and it cannot tolerate frost. Though it is not as fussy as other indoor houseplants that require a temperature of 55 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit to thrive, this plant does not need you to do much to create the ideal indoor environment, aside from not letting it freeze.
While for outdoor settings, it requires a temperature of around 45 degrees Fahrenheit or higher to survive because they are native to tropical and subtropical climates. Temperatures between 65 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit on the other hand, are ideal for its growth and blooming.
Overwatering is a big NO for Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe as it only needs a minimal amount of water. Just like any other succulent, soak and dry is the handiest way to irrigate this plant as it retains moisture in its leaves. It should also be kept underhand.
Free draining and light soil is a must for the Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe to survive. To ensure that the soil you are using is suitable, purchase a cactus or succulent soil that drains well. If you cannot find this, you may mix an amount of 50% sand or perlite into a 50% potting soil/cactus mix. A 60/40 peat moss/perlite mix may also suffice to improve water drainage.
In most cases, you must also take into consideration the pots you are using. Clay pots are suitable for planting your succulents as this will aid in the wicking of excess water from the soil by helping in ensuring proper drainage and avoiding overwatering of the plant.
Kalanchoes do not require fertilizers. But to keep it healthy as much as possible, regular feeding to boost its nutrients is a good thing to do. Liquid or pellet fertilizers are advisable to satisfy your plant’s needs but make sure that you follow the exact amount and type of nutrition they need right away when you feed your plant.
Remember, reading and following the directions could be of great help to fertilize your Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata properly. Mostly Kalanchoes are fed during the springtime and summertime. While in wintertime, they avoid feeding it as it does not need many nutrients.
Maintenance and Grooming
Little to no maintenance is what a Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Variegata requires. All you need to do is to deadhead it or remove spent flowers to keep the pots and your garden clean-looking.
And when the watering time arrives, make sure to spray the plant to remove dust and keep its leaves and flowers fresh-looking.
Pest and Disease of Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe
Succulents like Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi are known to be pest and disease-resistant as long as you take care of them properly. So, they only require minimum to no maintenance at all.
However, once you neglect the plant, unnoticed bugs, mites, and others could be problematic as these insects are leaf lovers. So when watering your succulents, better check it for they might be mites, beetles, or other insects.
Once a problem seems to arise, address it immediately. Mild pesticides are of significant help, or for critters, rubbing a 70% isopropyl alcohol on the plant parts, using a non-toxic insecticidal spray, or neem oil spray is helpful.
Propagation by Leaf
If you already have an Aurora Borealis Kalanchoe succulent, you have seen that it produces offsets, which you can use to grow additional plants. The tiny plants emerge from the parent plant’s leaf tips and rely on the parent plant for support as they grow roots.
To propagate by leaf:
- Twist a leaf from the mother plant starts the process.
- Take note that if a leaf is attached to the stem, you will have a lower likelihood of succeeding.
Allow the leaf to dry for a few days so the end calluses over.
Once there are calluses, plant them in well-draining soil. And when the earth is entirely dry, water it. Take care of it how you would care for a grown kalanchoe.