Desert Rose Adenium Shrub Adenium obesum
* Images shown are of mature plants
Desert Rose Adenium Shrub Adenium obesum
Low-Maintenance Rose You Can Grow Inside or Outdoors
Desert Rose (Adenium obesum) is not a true rose. But it has some of the most gorgeous flowers you've ever seen. If you've shopped at garden centers or browsed nursery catalogs only to see the same plants offered year after year, it may be time to add a new and exciting plant to your collection. Desert Rose has a look all its own. It's the kind of plant that people look at and think, "I wonder what kind of plant that is?" It grabs attention, and it does it in a big way.
An Exotic Plant That's off the Beaten Path
You may not have seen a Desert Rose plant ?… until now. They're uncommon plants, but they're extremely easy to grow. You'll love their three best features:
• Unusual shape. Desert Rose looks almost like a miniature tree because of the way it branches. If you follow the trunk down to the soil, you'll see a swollen base. This does not indicate that something is wrong with the plant; it's one of Desert Rose's distinguishing characteristics.
• Striking flowers. Deep pinkish-rose blossoms that can reach up to 2 inches across are the calling card of Desert Rose. These namesake flowers brighten any sunny spot '– whether it's in the landscape or in your home. When the flowers begin blooming during the warmer months, the bloom season may last up to 6 months! Indoors, it's possible to keep plants blooming on and off year-round.
• Tolerant of occasional neglect. We love our plants, and we don't advocate neglecting any plant! When a plant is characterized as tolerant of occasional neglect, it simply means that forgetful gardeners (or those with busy schedules) may forget to water their plants sometimes. This could cause the death of some plants. Drought-adapted plants, such as Desert Rose Adenium, are much more forgiving of the occasional oversights of forgetful or busy gardeners.
This Succulent Rose Can Withstand Drought without Suffering
Desert Rose is actually a low-maintenance succulent plant, which is how it withstands temporary dry periods. True roses can't handle periods of drought, but Desert Rose sails through dry periods without suffering. It's that distinctive swollen base '– called a caudex '– where it stores water. Part of Desert Rose's scientific name is "obesum," which means fat. From this fattened trunk grow several stems, which also store water, although they're not swollen in one spot as the main trunk of the plant.
More Flowers to Admire with Very Few Leaves Blocking the View
Desert Rose is not covered with many leaves; in fact, the foliage is rather sparse. This is not a sign that the plant is unhealthy! It's the natural growing habit of this plant. With fewer leaves, the architectural look of the trunk and branches is more apparent, and the flowers become more prominent. The leaves are glossy and dark-green, providing a nice contrast to the pinkish-red flowers. In cooler weather, or if you move your Desert Rose plant indoors, it may drop most of its leaves. This is okay, too! And even in hot weather, your plant will still have more stems and flowers than leaves. You'll also notice that this succulent plant has no thorns or spiny leaves, which characterize other types of succulents. The stems are smooth, so you can handle the plant without risking injury.
Queen of the Potted Plants
Even if you live within Desert Rose's limited hardiness range, you may prefer to grow it as a potted plant instead of a landscape plant. It flourishes in a container, in large part because of the superior drainage that pots offer. As a succulent, Desert Rose does not like wet soil; in fact, it'll decline if you water it too much. In a pot, Desert Rose is perfectly content and easy to maintain.
How to Grow Desert Rose in Pots
• Pot size. Desert Rose likes a tight fit in containers. This doesn't mean you want to squeeze it into a too-small pot, but as a rule of thumb you'll want to choose a container that is only 2 inches wider all around the plant's enlarged base. You may only have to repot it every two to three years when the plant's base approaches the rim of the container.
• Drainage. Choose a pot that has a drainage hole; that's essential.
• Soil. Use a soilless mix that's blended for succulent plants. This is not a plant for rich garden soil or compost-amended potting mix. You can also blend your own mix for Desert Rose by mixing perlite into soil, at the rate of 70 to 80 percent perlite with the remainder of soil.
• Watering needs. Even though Desert Rose is adapted to drought conditions, it thrives during its active season during the hot summer months if you keep it watered well. If you use the proper potting mix, which is fast-draining, the mix won't hold so much water that it causes the roots to rot. When watering, saturate the soil until water flows from the drainage hole. Then don't water again until the soil is slightly dry. As cool weather approaches in autumn, reduce the watering frequency. After you bring your Desert Rose indoors for the winter, you should water it very sparingly unless you move it into a full-sun location (such as a sun room) ?… even if it drops its leaves. You may only need to give it a thorough watering every 3 to 4 weeks to keep the roots hydrated.
• Fertilizer. During its active growing season in the warm months, fertilize Desert Rose when you water it by using a water-soluble fertilizer at half-strength. This will promote flowering. When you move it indoors for the winter, withhold fertilizer until you set it out again the following spring.
Where to Place Potted Plants in Your Home
The perfect indoor location for Desert Rose is your sunroom or solarium that receives direct sun each day. In that environment, your plant will continue to bloom for much of the year. Optionally, you can place it in a sunny kitchen greenhouse window. If you grow it in a sunny spot outdoors during warm weather but you don't have a very sunny spot indoors, that's okay. Just place your potted Desert Rose where it will receive the brightest light possible in its indoor winter location. It will still grow in a reduced-light location, but it may stop flowering during this time. And don't worry if it drops its leaves; many plants will react that way!
Where to Place Potted Plants in the Landscape
Desert Rose can be the shining star of your succulent garden. You can place its container as a focal point with other succulents that are planted in the ground around it, or you can enjoy designing a succulent garden that features all container plants. Desert Rose is also a standout plant in your rock garden. And just because Desert Rose is a succulent plant doesn't mean you can't mix and match other types of plants to create a garden bed with an eclectic design. You'll really enjoy Desert Rose up close and personal if you grow it in a sunny deck or patio container. As a little bonus, hummingbirds and butterflies love the flowers on Desert Rose, so make sure you place its pot in a prime location for viewing these delightful creatures!
When to Bring Your Plant Indoors for the Winter
Desert Rose is sensitive to cold temperatures. When nighttime temperatures drop below 55 degrees F in late summer to early autumn, go ahead and bring your plant indoors for the winter. When nighttime temperatures are consistently above 55 degrees in spring, you can set your Desert Rose outside again. But don't plunge it into full sun. Gradually acclimate it to full-sun conditions by giving it an hour of full sun each day and then setting it out of direct sunlight. After a few days, let it stay in the sun for two hours at a time, and so on until it's able to handle four to six hours of sun at a time.
Desert Rose holds its shape without needing you to prune it. But if you need to trim a broken stem, wear gloves. This plant's sap contains toxins that can cause contact dermatitis for some people who have sensitive skin. Keep it away from children and pets, too!
Estimated Shipping Time: Most orders ship within 1-2 days. As noted on the website, some items are seasonal, and may only ship in spring or fall. Once your order is shipped, you'll receive an email with a tracking number.
|Less than $100
Growing Zones: 4-11 patio / 10-11 outdoors
- Mature Height: 4-6
- Mature Width: 8-10
- Sunlight: Full Sun, Partial Sun
- Spacing: 8-10 ft.
- Does Not Ship To: AZ