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Tulista pumila (Pearl Plant)

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Scientific Name

Tulista pumila (L.) G.D.Rowley

Common Names

Pearl Plant, Miniature Aloe

Synonyms

Aloe arachnoides var. pumila, Aloe pumila, Haworthia margaritifera, Haworthia pumila, Tulista pumila var. pumila

Scientific Classification

Family: Asphodeloideae
Subfamily: Asphodeloideae
Tribe: Aloeae
Genus: Tulista

Origin

Native to South Africa, in a winter rainfall area of Western Cape.

Description

Tulista pumila, formerly known as Haworthia pumila, is a small, slow-growing succulent that forms attractive rosettes of triangular leaves. The rosettes grow up to 6 inches (15 cm) in diameter and up to 10 inches (25 cm) tall. Leaves are olive-green to brown and covered with raised white tubercles. They are upright, sometimes incurved, up to 5.6 inches (14 cm) long and up to 0.8 inches (2 cm) wide. Flowers are brownish-white, tubular, and appear in summer on thin, up to 16 inches (40 cm) tall inflorescences.

The specific epithet "pumila" derives from the Latin "pumilus," meaning "dwarf" and refers to the original description as Aloe pumila. It is the largest species of the genus Tulista, but it is small for an Aloe.

Photo by Harry

How to Grow and Care

Light: Tulistas tolerate full sun, but they prefer semi-shaded positions. Any window in your home or office is likely to be an appropriate setting for Tulistas.

Soil: Use a commercial soil formulated for succulents or make your own well-draining potting mix.

Hardiness: Tulista pumila can tolerate temperatures as low as 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b.

Watering: The best way to water Tulistas is to use the "soak and dry" method. Get the soil completely wet and then wait until the soil is dry before watering again. During winter, reduce watering to once per month.

Fertilizing: Tulistas do not require much fertilizer. For optimum growth, fertilization is a good idea. Feed during the growing season with a weak fertilizer solution. Do not fertilize during the winter.

Repotting: When it begins to outgrow its pot, repot your Tulista in a new shallow and slightly larger pot with fresh soil. The best time to repot is in the spring or early summer.

Propagation: Using seeds or offsets are the most frequently used methods.

Toxicity: Tulistas are generally non-toxic to humans and animals.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Tulista.

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