Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is an easy-to-grow succulent, perfect for those not well-versed in gardening.
This guide will help the reader learn the proper steps to care for the Variegated Baby Sun Rose to keep it healthy and beautiful.
in this article:
About Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is a dwarf trailing succulent with a wide, spreading form and beautiful variegated leaves.
The Variegated Baby Sun Rose has small, rounded leaves that are variegated in a pattern of patches. The white to yellowish variegated foliage is showy. The striped leaves are often paired with the striking red flower that draws the eyes.
In the proper conditions, the flowers remain on the leaves year-round, their red color contrasting the green and white leaves.
|Botanical Name||Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’|
|Common Name||Variegated Baby Sun Rose|
|Bloom season||Winter, Summer|
|Bloom color||Pink, Purple, Red|
|Soil||Well-Drained, Loamy, Sandy|
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ Care
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is a relatively easy succulent to grow, but it still requires some attention. It is drought-tolerant and doesn’t require beyond basic care.
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is a sun-loving plant that will thrive in full sun. It can grow in partial shade, but its leaves are less vibrant and vigorous.
A sunny windowsill is ideal for this plant. If displayed in a hanging container, ensure other sources around it don’t block the sunlight.
Variegated Baby Sun Rose prefers sandy, well-draining soil. A succulent potting mix is ideal for this plant because it retains some moisture but allows the roots to breathe. The best way to create your own potting mix is by combining equal parts of sand and compost (or peat moss).
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ should be watered when it starts to dry out. It requires regular watering in the summer.
However, in the winter, it prefers being kept completely dry. So don’t be tempted to water even if the soil is parched.
Avoid overwatering and soggy soils; root rot is a genuine concern.
Temperature and Humidity
Variegated Baby Sun Rose prefers temperatures between 55 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. The plant can tolerate higher temperatures but may not thrive or bloom well in these conditions. It does best when the temperature stays steady, with little fluctuation from day to night.
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ doesn’t need much fertilizer. To boost your plant, use an all-purpose balanced fertilizer every two months from spring through fall. You can also add dried bloodworms or fish emulsion to the soil for extra nutrients.
Variegated Baby Sun Rose is a fast-growing plant that needs regular pruning to keep it healthy.
In the spring and summer, remove any leaves that fall off naturally but don’t deadhead spent flowers. Remove flowers as they fade so they don’t attract pests or diseases.
Potting and Repotting Variegated Baby Sun Rose
Variegated Baby Sun Rose likes to be slightly potbound. If you can’t find a container with holes, drill some into the bottom of the pot.
If you’re repotting from a nursery-purchased container, remove any soil that came with it first.
Spring is the best time to repot the Baby Sun Rose, as this is when it will grow best. You can also take this opportunity to prune any unsightly growth.
How to Repot (Step-by-Step)
- Remove the plant from its current container. Use the trowel or a plastic spoon to loosen up the soil around the roots to avoid damaging anything.
- Put the plant in its new container. Fill the container with succulent potting mix, ensuring not to fill up to the rim.
- Gently push down the soil around the roots, so there are no air pockets.
- Water your Variegated Baby Sun Rose and allow it to drain.
- Place your Variegated Baby Sun Rose in a warm, sunny spot and resume the regular care routine.
Propagating Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ by Cuttings (Step-by-Step)
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is easiest to propagate by stem-tip cuttings. The process is pretty straightforward and doesn’t require much expertise.
- Cut the tip of a healthy stem, ensuring it is at least 3 inches long. Use a sharp knife or pruner to make your cut.
- Try not to damage any of the leaves or buds growing on the stem.
- Allow the cutting to heal and callus over for a few days before planting.
- Dip one end of the cutting into some rooting hormone (optional).
- Plant the callused cutting in a pot filled with an appropriate growing medium. A good option is to use a soil-less potting mix or perlite and vermiculite.
- Water lightly and place the pot in a warm, well-lit area (but not in direct sunlight).
- When roots begin to grow from the bottom end of your cutting, remove it from its original container and plant it into a larger pot filled with potting soil or directly into the ground.
Propagating Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ by Seeds (Step-by-Step)
Spring is the optimal time for sowing seeds as this gives the seedlings plenty of time to grow into healthy, robust plants before the winter chills.
- Select a large pot to accommodate the number of seedlings you wish to grow. Fill it with a well-draining soil mixture (such as one part peat moss and one part sand).
- Prepare your seeds by rubbing them between two pieces of paper towel until they are completely dry. Plant three or four seeds in each hole, at least 1/2 inch deep.
- Cover with soil, press down gently, and water thoroughly.
- Maintain high heat (around 80 degrees Fahrenheit) and provide high humidity conditions to the seedlings.
- Water lightly and wait for germination.
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ can bloom year-round in the right conditions. Its bright pink and purple flowers last ages and complement the foliage’s light green and white variegation quite nicely.
Blooms first appear around spring and summer. They can be solitary or clumping, depending on the conditions.
Aptenia cordifolia ‘Variegata’ is non-toxic. However, the sap can be an irritant to sensitive individuals. Best to keep away from children and small pets. (Hint: Plant in a tall-hanging basket to keep it out of reach).
NOTE: This page is not intended as a substitute for veterinary advice. The toxicity of an ingested substance varies depending on the amount ingested, the animal’s weight, and its sensitivity to specific allergens. Contact your veterinarian or local animal poison control center immediately if you think your pet may have ingested a toxic substance.
Mealybugs are white, cottony bugs that feed off plant sap and damage leaves. Once established, they can be tough to get rid of. So, it’s recommended to deal with them as early as possible. These can be removed by treating the affected area with rubbing alcohol or insecticidal soap.
Scale insects are small, immobile bugs that look like tiny shells on the leaves and stems. They can be difficult to spot but usually, appear in clusters or rings around the plant. Remove the scale insects by hand or with rubbing alcohol or insecticidal soap.
Aphids are tiny green bugs that latch onto plants at the underside of leaves and suck nutrients from them. They also spread viruses in your garden. Use insecticidal soap or neem oil to treat the affected areas.
- Placing under harsh sunlight
- Using poorly drained potting mediums
- Fertilizing during dormancy