The faucaria felina is a type of succulent plants that is native to South Africa. It has wide, green leaves with red edges and is known for its feline-like appearance. This succulent thrives in sunlight but does not require much water or fertilizer.
This faucaria felina can be planted on the ground or inside pot, making it perfect for gardeners who do not have time to care for plants often.
It is a beautiful succulent that is found in the southern regions of Africa. These plants are known to grow into dense clumps and can be bright green or dark red in color. They often will have tiger-like markings on them! This plant has been used for medicinal purposes, but it also makes a great addition to any garden or home because of its unique beauty and hardiness.
- 1 Origin and description
- 2 Faucaria felina propagation
- 3 General Care Requirements
Origin and description
The genus Faucaria is found in South Africa. The plant species Faucaria felina was first described by Halda, Dinter & Meyer in 2018. People who live near the habitat of this plant often called it “Cat’s Jaws” because its teeth look like cat jaws.
This species is native to South Africa. It has striking, circular leaves that are covered in soft spines and grow very close together on the tips of upright stems. The flowers appear quite late in its growing season (August-October) and range from yellow with pink or purple stripes to deep wine reds. This plant prefers partial sun but may not bloom as readily under those conditions.
Faucaria felina propagation
Propagation is quite easy from cuttings. Faucaria felina can be propagated with either leaf or stem cuttings, and both work equally well.
Leaves are best taken in spring or early summer. The cuttings should be around five inches long, with the leaf portion being an inch or so and having at least one growth point. They can also come from the soft new growth that is emerging. Cut just below a node (where there would be a leaf) making sure to leave a couple of millimeters on the cutting including one growth point.
Put them in a pot with a very fast-draining soil mix (I like to use cacti & succulent soil mixed with pumice) and keep it shaded until new growth emerges, then move into the shade or indirect light. New roots will form quickly and they should be potted up in a larger pot when they have formed about three pairs of new leaves.
I have used both leaf and stem cuttings with equal success (100%). It is possible to get multiple plants from one cutting, but it can be tricky because not all the new growth will root successfully. Because of this, I would recommend taking at least five or six cuttings in case some don’t work out.
General Care Requirements
Faucaria felina is very adaptable to different lighting conditions. It can easily take full sun, but also does well in shade and will even tolerate quite a bit of dark. This plant is easy to grow, even if you don’t have a green thumb. It doesn’t require any special care and will tolerate neglect quite well.
Faucaria felina is not picky about soil either, as long as it has good drainage for this plant to thrive in the conditions described earlier. A fast-draining cactus mix is preferred.
Faucaria felina grows in soil that is very well-draining. The plant’s native habitat was dry, hot climates with sandy soils and rocky outcrops, so it thrives on porous potting mixes full of pumice or lava rocks to prevent over-watering. The succulent plant does not like to sit in wet soils, so make sure it is planted deep enough that the top of its bulbous root structure (which looks like a cross between cabbage leaves and elephant ears) sits at least ½ inch beneath the soil’s surface.
Faucaria felina prefers an open planting mix with excellent drainage, so choose a pot with numerous drainage holes at its base. The soil must dry out completely between watering; if the plant’s leaves turn black or shriveled-looking, it is an indication that you are underwatering (not enough water) rather than overwatering it.
Water your succulents about once a week, or whenever the soil is completely dry. Watering more frequently can lead to root rot and other problems. Use tepid water only—warm if you are able to provide it, but cool tap water will also do just fine. Let them sit in their pots for 30 minutes after watering to ensure that the water drains through. You can also use a spray bottle to mist your plants, which helps keep them cool in summer and provides humidity for their roots.
Faucaria felina is not picky about fertilizer. A balanced liquid or water-soluble one will work fine, whether it’s a slow-release type of fertilizer or organic plant food. It may help to use soil that has some sand in it if you are using either kind of liquid fertilizers as the sand helps to keep the fertilizer from burning your plants.
Fertilizing should be done at least twice a year, and more frequently if you are using liquid fertilizers.
Faucaria felina is a very adaptable species, it can withstand low temperatures as well as high. During the winter months, they are happy to go dormant at around 12°C (53°F). In summer expect them to be active during warm spells of up to 25°C (77°F) or so.
Faucaria felina is from South Africa. It’s a very frost-resistant plant, but to be kept at its best, it needs high humidity and good ventilation during the winter months. In the summertime, water faucaria felina moderately every week or so – only when the soil has dried out completely. If the plant is not watered enough, yellow spots will appear on the leaves.
The ideal humidity range is 30-70%.
If you want to reduce the size of your plant, or produce more branches and flowers, then it is time for pruning. You can do this by removing dead leaves and stems from the bottom up – but make sure not to remove any leaves with growing points as these will continue producing new growth! For larger plants like faucaria felina, you can cut the top of it as well so that your plant produces a bushier growth.
For smaller plants like faucaria tigrinia, pruning is not necessary and should be avoided to ensure its health. If you want more branches on small plants, then simply cutting off dead leaves may suffice!
When to repot
It is important that you water the plant before taking any of these steps. You need to ensure that your succulent has enough moisture in its soil for this process to be safe and effective, otherwise, there’s a risk of losing parts of your plant when they are moved.
When you repot this plant, it is best to do so in the springtime when new growth begins. If your plant has grown enough that its roots are coming through the holes in its pot, then you can begin thinking about repotting it
Whenever possible, avoid placing these plants near drafty windows or doors, and avoid placing them in areas that receive a significant amount of direct sunlight. This can damage your plant over time
If you do not repot your faucaria felina promptly when it is ready to be moved, then this plant will quickly die because its roots are very sensitive and fragile. If you repot your plant too early, then there is a risk that the roots will actually rot.
Faucaria felina is a very cold-hardy succulent that can take temperatures into the low twenties. They store water in their leaves and stems to survive these conditions, but also rely on chilling during dormancy for several months to break seed dormancy. Failure to give them enough time outside of active growth will result in poor flowering or no flowering at all.
Flowers & Fragrance
Faucaria felina is a small, low-growing species with very attractive yellow flowers. The flower spines are short and hooked backward, so they point downward toward the ground as if to say “Don’t mess with me!” This tough plant would be great for borders, pot culture, or even in your rock garden.
Growth rate and Size
Faucaria felina is a clump-forming succulent with relatively short, broad leaves. The leaf tips are recurved and the leaves have dark green to grayish brown margins that contrast nicely against their stark white centers. This species grows slowly but can eventually form nice tight clusters if grown in sunny conditions outdoors or in a bright, sunny windowsill indoors.
Faucaria felina is not known to be toxic.
USDA Hardiness Zones
Faucaria felina is considered a perennial for USDA Hardiness Zones 11, 12, and 13.
Pests and diseases
Faucaria felina is very resistant to pests and diseases. However, it can be affected by scale insects if there are aphids on the plant, feeding on them. Scale insects tend to appear after a cold winter with little sunlight. Aphids also like humidity which may form mold in humid conditions or rot leaves during tropical seasons when the air is very moist.
Faucaria felina is also fairly resistant to snails and slugs because of their low toxicity. These pests, if present in the soil, are more likely to affect other plants that Faucaria felina grows with in a pot together rather than affecting it directly.
The only time it may be affected is during its propagation stage.
Faucaria felina has also been known to have trouble with mealybugs which are difficult to get rid of even if the plant appears healthy, as they can hide inside leaves and stems for a long time before being discovered.