Gasteria Little Warty is a genus of succulent plants native to South Africa. Gasterias are in the Asphodelaceae family and they have gained popularity as houseplants because they are easy to grow indoors. Little warty plant is also known for their attractive flowers that resemble vases, with spikes coming out all around them.
The Gasteria Little Warty plant has been named after its appearance, which resembles an elephant’s trunk! This plant has no leaves but does produce flowers that can be red or pink in color, depending on the amount of light they receive.
The plant is a Gasteria species that was first discovered in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. Gasteria Little Warty, as it’s commonly called, has long been popular with succulent enthusiasts for its unique and fleshy appearance. A Gasteria plant can be identified by its thick trunk which tapers off into two legs on either side of the torso, giving it an upside-down look to its leaves.
Gasterias are slow growers but they will produce offsets if given enough space to grow outwards! This post will teach you everything you need to know about Gasteria Little Warty so you can start growing your own today!
Origin of Gasteria Little Warty
Gasteria Little Warty is native to South Africa. Found in the Eastern Cape, it grows as a low-growing succulent reaching up only about an inch above soil level. It was given its current name by John Gilbert Baker in 1874.
Gasteria Little Warty originates from South Africa, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe in the grasslands of open thorny bushland or kloofs. The area receives an average annual rainfall ranging between 220–550 millimeters that lasts for about four weeks with a dry period of about five months during summer. The plant is naturally adapted to hot dry conditions and does best in well-drained soil.
The plant’s meaty leaves are covered with warty bumps, giving the species its common name of Little Warty palnts. These bumpy surfaces give off a blue-green hue when grown under bright light and may appear purple or almost black if grown under less intense lighting conditions.
While this succulent is slow-growing and easy to maintain, it does require a bit more attention than some other succulents as the leaves are susceptible (more information on this later)
This plant can be propagated by cuttings taken from the mother plant. It is also common to find Little Warty being offered as a grafted succulent with different varieties of Gasterias, such as Aloe or Haworthia attached to its roots. In both cases, these plants will need time before they begin to grow and take on their own characteristics.
Gasteria Little Warty is a meaty rod for your pot containing very little sap that makes it safe to transplant into anything from cacti soil mix, regular succulent potting mix or even one of the commercial succulent soils like Fafard Organic Cactus Mix. This plant is very drought-tolerant, so it prefers to be kept dry between watering.
Gasteria Little Warty is a little succulent that gradually forms clumps of beautiful leaves set up in rosettes. It grows to around 6 inches (15cm) wide and as high as 8 inches (20cm). Leaves are brilliant green to dark-green with raised pale silvery-green or pale olive-green stripes and edges, short, sharp points at its tip, and upper and lower surface covered with white pearly tubercles.
Gasteria Little Warty can grow up to 40cm tall and 15cm wide. It has beautiful light green leaves that are tinged with silver along the edges. They have a waxy, glossy appearance and feel very meaty.
The leaves of the Gasteria Little Warty plant grow outward from a short stem in a star-shaped formation. They do not have any teeth or prickles on them. If you want your succulent to grow faster, try clipping off some of its leaves with sharp scissors every month.
Gasteria Little Warty is a beautiful succulent that looks great in miniature gardens, terrariums, and even as an indoor plant! Make sure it gets enough sunlight to enjoy its full-color potential. Also, make sure not to overwater this beauty.
It is a good plant that has an attractive leaf color that clumps quickly and not so little in time, however, it is sluggish.
Stem: Almost stemless (acaulescent).
Roots: Cylindrical (terete) and succulent. Its thick root has a little branching.
Leaves: Basically spiraled or distichous, brilliant green (to dark-green complete sun), firm, with raised pale silvery-green or pale olive-green stripes and edge with great deals of pearly tubercles (warts) in the upper and undersides. The leaf pinnacle is obtuse bearing a mucro.
Keep in mind: There are some comparable and carefully associated cultivars like “Lizard Warts” and “Lime Warty”.
The “little warty” is among the forefather of Gasteraloe cv. Green ice.
Gasteria little warty propagation
Gasterias are easy to propagate, either from seed or offsets. Propagating by seed is the slowest method but results in a plant genetically identical to its parent. Look for seeds at garden centers and online retailers – they will have already started germinating once removed from their mother’s roots. Gasteria seeds are tiny and slow to germinate. They will take several months before they develop roots, so patience is key with this method of propagation.
Gasterias can also be propagated from offsets that grow around the base of a mature plant or up its sides as it grows into multiple rosettes.
Offsets – sometimes called “pups” – are the baby version of their parents. To propagate, simply remove an offset with a sharp knife or pruners and pot it in its own container.
It will take several years before it matures into a full-sized plant.
The seeds of Gasterias are very small and slow to germinate, but offsets can be removed from the parent at any time with little difficulty. The mother plant will continue producing new pups for many years if desired. It is also possible to marcotize a Gasteria plant, which will cause it to produce multiple offsets.
The best time for propagation is through division or leaves. Seeds will likely not be successful and may require more maintenance than the plant is worth.
How to grow Gasteria Little Warty
Gasteria Little Warty is a slow-growing plant that has the ability to live long and easy to care for, this makes them an excellent houseplant and can be an exceptional topic for the starting gasteriaphile (it can grow perfectly on window sills, terraces, and in mini succulent gardens where they are more than happy to share their environment with other smaller sized succulent plants, or in outside rockeries).
They need partial shade to full shade but prefer full sun during the day. (with some exposure to direct sunlight, the leaf develops a good reddish tint and stays compact).
They can withstand a large range of habitats and soils. However, they love a very permeable potting mix to increase drainage. The soil must be kept damp throughout the hot summer months, but not overwatered.
With a balanced fertilizer that is diluted to half the recommended strength, the plant can be fertilized just once. Only water when the soil looks completely dry during the cold weather. This plant is also Frost durable to -1°C ( Or less).
Gasteria is quickly propagated by the leaf cuttings or the removal of offshoots in spring or summertime. If using the offshoots, it ought to remain undamaged in the post, although every head will have its own root system and it might quickly be divided for propagation.
If propagate by leaf cuttings, remove a leaf allow it to callous for about 1 month (e.g. in a cool window sill), allowing the injury to recover. Lay the leaf on its side with the basal part buried in the soil. This leaf needs to root within a month or 2, and little plants will form at the leaf base.
Young plants can be gathered the following season. They can likewise be grown from seed. Seed ought to be planted throughout summertime in sandy well drained soil and ideally safeguarded from full sun. When they are big enough for handling, the seedlings are sluggish growing and can be planted out in little containers.
The soil ought to ideally be improved with garden compost. They respond effectively to a liquid natural fertilizer.
Gasteria little warty care
Gasteria Little Warty is very easy to grow and thrives in a wide range of conditions, so it makes an excellent choice for both beginning and expert succulent gardeners. However, because the plant stores water in its leaves it stays plump even if not watered often. It prefers dry climates with cool winters that drop below freezing.
Gasteria Little Warty is a great addition to succulent gardens and can be used as accent plants or in small containers of any kind! It also makes for an excellent gift choice due to its widespread appeal and ease of care.
Gasteria Little Warty is enjoyable succulents, its leaves are thick and covered in little “warts”. Gasteria can be easily cross-bred with Aloes and the resulting plant will be the hybrid Gasteraloes.
Gasteria gets their name from the shape of the leaves, which is believed to look like a stomach (for this reason the Greek prefix “gaster”, indicating “stomach”).
They are a succulent plant with fleshy, smooth, and triangular-shaped leaves. Its stems are short and creeping. It blooms in winter–summer (fall–spring) with white flowers that open from September to May which can be followed by red berries. The stemless little wart plant is slow-growing and is very easy to care for, following the below guide.
Where to Plant
Gasteria Little Warty isn’t cold-hardy, so if you reside in a zone that gets cooler than 30°F (-1.1°C), the best is to plant this succulent in a container that can be brought inside your home. It succeeds in bright sunlight.
If growing your plant indoors, place it in a spot that gets a lot of sunshine, that is near a southern-facing window if you are in the Northern Hemisphere.
Gasteria Little Warty prefers bright light but avoids direct sunlight. It can handle a little bit of shade and is extremely drought-tolerant. It helps to keep the leaves from becoming flaccid and dropping off but does not enjoy direct sunlight which can cause the burning of its fleshy foliage.
In general, Gasteria likes a lot of sun, but can take it when they’re in the shade. They do well if you keep them outside in the summer and bring them inside for winter. However, they don’t like to get too hot, so you can give them morning sunlight and afternoon shade.
Gasteria Little Warty has a shallow root system, which makes it possible to grow in pots or other containers. It will do best when planted into an African violet soil mix with some clay content added. A typical ratio for potting Gasteria is one part of coarse perlite and two parts of potting soil (or leaf soil).
Gasteria demands little water. Water them once a month in the summer and every two weeks during winter. Put some rocks or gravel at the bottom of your pot so that they do not rot from too much watering.
Don’t overfeed your plants, as this can also cause rot and nasty smells ruining the pot.
If you see that your plant is wilting or looking a bit worse despite being watered, it could be suffering from root rot. This happens if the roots have been exposed to water for too long and start rotting away – often due to lack of drainage in the pot or not enough air circulation. If this happens, you should repot your plant as soon as possible and let it dry out a little bit before watering again.
Gasterias are heavy feeders, so they should be fertilized in summer with a balanced fertilizer. Do not use high nitrogen during the winter growing season as this will cause leaf loss.
Although, fertilizer is not that necessary for Gasteria Little Warty. If you really want to feed it, try using a low-nitrogen fertilizer.
Too much fertilizing should not be done at all since this plant does not need any help with growing or blooming its beautiful flowers that come out throughout April to August (starting in July for us here in the Pacific Northwest).
The average temperature range for Gasteria is between 65 and 80 degrees. Keep an eye on the temperature in your greenhouse to make sure it doesn’t get too hot. If you’re growing them indoors, a lot of people recommend putting potted plants at least two feet from windows that can produce direct sunlight or drafts from doors being opened and closed frequently.
Humidity isn’t a huge concern when it comes to growing Gasteria little warty. They can tolerate much lower humidity than other succulents, and they’re also able to store water in their leaves so little misting won’t be totally necessary for them.
Average humidity levels of 50-70% are suggested for your little warty succulent.
Pruning is a great way to encourage new growth for your plant. If you have a plant that’s getting too tall, removing the top of the stem can help encourage branching and prevent it from outgrowing its pot.
You’ll want to remove any dead leaves as soon as they’re spotted, since those will never turn green again.
Also remove any leaves that start looking a little brown around the edges or tips. If your Gasteria has been in bloom, you’ll want to wait until it’s finished before pruning away any dead buds because they look pretty interesting up close!
When to repot
When your plant is getting too big for its pot, it’s time to repot. The best time of year to do this is in the spring as soon as you can see new growth starting. If that isn’t an option for you though, wait until summer or fall since they won’t be producing new growth at those times.
When you repot your plant, it’s best to do so with a pot just slightly bigger than the previous one, and fill the bottom of that pot with some broken pieces of clay pots or gravel to promote drainage. Use well-draining soil for potted plants, preferably an African violet mix without too much bark or other organic matter.
When you want to repot your plant, it’s a good idea to use some kind of mesh pot insert so the soil doesn’t fall through the drainage holes after being watered. You’ll want to water from below for about five minutes before returning them back outside or inside if needed.
Gasterias go dormant and will shed their leaves in the winter to conserve energy, but it is okay because they’ll grow them back when spring comes around.
Flowers & Fragrance
Gasteria little warty blooms are pretty rare, but when they do, you’ll want to cut them off right away because if allowed to stay on the plant it won’t produce any new growth.
The flowers are very small and usually white or yellow in color, so their appearance isn’t really worth waiting for anyway! Plus, allowing your plant to go through its blooming process will drain a ton of energy from the plant and set it back further than if you cut off those buds.
They won’t produce any smells like your average flower, but they do have an interesting scent that’s sort of musky or earthy smelling when touched. It doesn’t really last too long though, so you won’t really be able to notice it.
The Gasteria Little Warty is slow-growing and can take several years before it reaches maturity. Since the growth rate is very low, this plant will likely not require more frequent pruning than that of any other succulent type.
Gasteria Little Warty is an ornamental succulent plant, which has no known toxicity.
Gasteria Little Warty is hardy in USDA hardiness zones of nine through eleven.
Pests and diseases
Gasteria little warty can be subject to various pests and diseases. The most common are scale insects, mealy bugs, aphids, spider mites, thrips. If you notice any of these issues on your plant, it is important that you address the issue quickly in order to avoid further damage or even death of the plant.
Some people find the plant to be resistant to pests, while others have noted that mealybugs can cause damage. This succulent is also susceptible to root rot if water gets in its leaves or crown area. If it does end up with this problem you should cut off the dead part of the plant and wait for new growth before repotting.
Commonly mistaken for:
Gasteria Little Warty is commonly mistaken for Gasteria maculata which resembels it but, however, does not have the “warts” on its leaves.