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Adenium arabicum (Desert Rose)

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Scientific Name

Adenium arabicum I.B.Balf.

Accepted Scientific Name

Adenium obesum (Forssk.) Roem. & Schult.

Common Names

Desert Rose, Elephants Foot, Adan Bush

Scientific Classification

Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Apocynoideae
Tribe: Wrightieae
Genus: Adenium

Description

Adenium arabicum is an attractive succulent, up to 16.4 feet (5 m) tall, similar in appearance to Adenium obesum. Growth form is squat and fat, with a definite caudex and without much differentiation between trunk and branches. It has larger leaves, shiny on the upper and lower surface. Flowers range from pink to red and appear from spring to fall.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

These are not difficult plants to grow well, provided they get enough sunlight and warmth. Like all succulents, they cannot tolerate sitting in water, and if you err, do it on the side of too little water. Use a specialized soil mix designed for cacti and succulents.

Repot as needed, preferably during the warm season. To repot a Desert Rose, make sure the soil is dry before repotting, then gently remove the plant from the pot. Knock away the old soil from the roots, making sure to remove any rotted or dead roots in the process. Treat any cuts with a fungicide and antibacterial solution. Place the plant in its new pot and backfill with potting soil, spreading the roots out as you repot. Leave the plant dry for a week or so, then begin to water lightly to reduce the risk of root rot.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Desert Rose (Adenium obesum).

Origin

Adenium arabicum is a local form of Adenium obesum, native to Yemen and Saudi Arabia.

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