Haworthia wittebergensis W.F.Barker
This species is native to South Africa. It is restricted to the mountains to the south of Laingsburg and grows in rock crevices very well hidden, usually with only the broken leaf tips visible. The broken dry leaf tips occur naturally and are not the result of grazing by wild animals as often suggested.
Haworthia wittebergensis is a small succulent that forms stemless, slowly proliferous rosettes of slender grey‑green to purplish-green leaves with a dry papery texture. The rosettes grow up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) in diameter. Leaves are narrowly lanceolate with minutely white-toothed margins, keel, and tubercles arranged in longitudinal rows. They are up to 2.8 inches (7 cm) long and 0.3 inches (0.7 cm) wide at the base. The young leaves are erect and straight and become ascending and little spreading as they age. In habitat, the leaves may be tightly compacted into a narrow sheaf. Flowers are white with green venation and appear from midsummer to early fall. They are sparsely arranged in slender, unbranched, up to 12 inches (30 cm) long inflorescence.
The specific epithet "wittebergensis (wit-ee-berg-EN-sis)" means "of or from Witteberge" and refers to Witteberg, also known as Witteberge, a South African mountain range just off the southwest corner of Lesotho.
How to Grow and Care for Haworthia wittebergensis
Light: Place the potted plant in a bright area with some protection from the hottest rays of the day. White, yellow, or red-tinged leaves usually indicate that your H. wittebergensis receives too much sunlight. Deep shade tends to weaken the plant over a prolonged period. If your plant has spent the winter indoors, gradually move it outdoors into the bright sun to prevent sunburn.
Soil: Like all Haworthias, this plant does not like its roots to remain wet for prolonged periods, so the soil should be well-drained. Use a commercial potting mix for succulents or make your own.
Temperature: This succulent likes warmer temperatures in the summer but cool in the winter. However, it does not like being too cold. H. wittebergensis can withstand temperatures as low as 30 °F (-1.1 °C). USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 10a to 11b, 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C).
Watering: In spring and fall, when the growth is most active, water H. wittebergensis thoroughly, then wait until the top of the soil dries out before watering again. Water your plant less during the winter when its growth slows down significantly. During the hottest summer months, when this plant is mostly dormant, water just enough to keep the leaves from shriveling.
Fertilizing: H. wittebergensis does not require much fertilizer. However, for optimum growth, fertilization is a good idea. Feed only with a dilute fertilizer and only during the active growing season.
Repotting: This slow-growing succulent can stay in the same pot for years. To keep your plant healthy and happy, repot H. wittebergensis into fresh soil every two to three years in spring or fall. Repotting time is also the time to take offsets for propagation.
Propagation: The quickest and most common method of propagating H. wittebergensis is by offsets. It can also be propagated by leaves and seeds. Remove the offsets when they have started developing their own roots. Sow the seeds in spring or fall in a well-draining soil mix.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Haworthia.
Toxicity of Haworthia wittebergensis
H. wittebergensis is considered non-toxic to humans and animals.
- Back to genus Haworthia
- Succupedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
Click on a photo to see a larger version.