E. subrigida is native to Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest and Mexico Southwest where the plant grows in ledges and cliffs.
E. subrigida is a succulent belonging to the Crassulaceae botanical family. The plant is stemless and spineless and has a solitary rosette of leaves which can grow up to 30 cm in diameter. The leaves are fleshy, upturned, obovate, pointed at the apex, about 20 cm long, white-glaucous to lavender in color with dark pink and toothed margins. The plant is covered with a light bluish pruina which give the plant sophisticated color tones and distinguish the plant from E. palmeri otherwise very similar. Blooming occurs in late spring and early summer and flowering is carried by stalks up to 90 cm tall which rise from the center of the rosette. The inflorescence is erect and consists of a panicle of about 15 thin and bell-shaped flowers. The sepals are red inside and yellow outside. The plant changes hue depending on sun-exposure.
E. is a rare hybrid, easy to cultivate. The best sun-exposure is shade light, and the plant does not like temperatures below 10 °C so it needed to be placed indoors. The soil should be mixed with pumice, clay and loam to allow the drainage and prevent the root rot, the plant is prone to it indeed. Remember to use perforating pot to drain excess water. Watering can be done regularly from March to November: during the vegetative period you can water the plant (every 7 days), checking that the soil is completely dry before watering again; in winter you should stop the watering to allow to the plant to enter dormancy. If you want a faster and lush growth you can fertilize the plant once a month during the growing season with the specifics fertilizers for cacti; stop fertilizing throughout the winter. If the pot starts to be too small for the plant you can repot the plant in a pot 2 cm wider. Repotting should be done early in the growing season with fresh new potting soil. It is important to remove the dead leaves that fall at the base of the stem because otherwise the high humidity level increases the attacks of parasites, Echeverias are susceptible to mealybugs indeed.
Echeverias are one of the easiest succulents to propagate. Because is a hybrid, in order not to lose the characteristics of the plant, propagation can only be done by cutting. By cutting you can use leaf cuttings during the spring. Cut the leaves as close as possible to the stem and then let it dry; after a few days the cut surface will dry and a callus will form, then place the cutting in a mixture of sand, soil and pumice. To increase success of propagation you can cut two or more leaves at the same time. For Echeverias, is recommended for cuttings, temperatures around 20 °C.
The name “Echeveria” comes from Atanasio Echeverria, naturalist, botanist and Mexican artist of the late 1700s who painted and cooperated on the discovery and cataloging Mexico’s natural flora. The specific epithet “subrigida” is a Latin word which means almost rigida referring to the branches of the inflorescence.
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