Saturday, January 24, 2009

Echeveria: Black Prince

This echeveria is labeled "Black Prince" but it's not showing it's intense color at the moment. It's star-shaped rosette leaves should get nearly black in color in the summer I guess.
As all echeverias, it is placed in a bright area to prevent "stretching" and planted in heavy soil with excellent drainage. Porous cactus mediums are perfect to use to prevent water from staying long in it's roots. When they are watered over the top, the water collects in drops and spots the leaves when it dries. These spots are especially noticeable when the water is high in minerals. Drench and let dry. Water from below.
Echeverias come from higher altitudes so give them dry air, cool night temperatures and good air circulation. Atanasio Echeverria, the Mexican botanical artist, drew thousands of illustrations of Mexican plants collected by Martin Sesse and Jose Mocino in the last years of the eighteenth century. The original drawings are now lost, but in 1820, the botanist Alphonse De Candolle was so impressed with them that he hired 120 draftsmen to work ten days straight to make tracings. In 1837, De Candolle honored Echeverria by naming the Echeveria after him.

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