Ceropegia Haygarthii/Ceropegia Haygarthii

This unusual flowered succulent comes from South Africa. Like many members of this genus, it has thick, fleshy roots, a twining green stem and most unusual flowers. In C. haygarthii, the little ball above the flower is sup-posed to look like an insect hovering.

The climbing-stemmed Ceropegias grow quite quickly, and in the wild they would clamber through other foliage; indoors, this can be a problem and they are best grown on some sort of frame. Flowers are produced over a long period during the Summer. The leaves are semi-deciduous and will fall if the plant is kept too dry or too cold in the Autumn, leaving just the bare stems.

Although easy to grow, C. haygarthii needs a minimum temperature of about 13°C (55°F) in Winter if kept fairly dry. Like most plants, it will benefit from good ventilation, but not draughts.

This plant requires a bright situation at all times, but not full sun, and will grow happily in an East- or West-facing window.

Water C. haygarthii well during the Spring and Summer, then allow the compost to dry before watering again. During the Autumn and Winter, keep fairly dry, giving only enough water to prevent the stems from shrivelling. This plant will soon rot if kept wet at lower temperatures.

As a native of dry areas, Ceropegia haygarthii will benefit from being provided with a dry atmosphere.

Feed this succulent regularly every 1-2 weeks during the Spring and Summer, using a cactus food, or one recommended for tomatoes diluted at about half strength.

Succulents will do best in a well-drained compost containing about one third by volume of horticultural grit for improved drainage. Repot at least every two years.

This is an interesting plant to grow, but the stems will soon grow very long, so it is best trained on a frame. Do not over-pot, as the plants are quite susceptible to over-watering. Cuttings can be taken in Summer and rooted easily in a gritty compost. A second plant is always a good insurance against the first one rotting, as they can be quite temperamental.


Mealy Bugs hide among the stems and leaves: eradicate with a cotton bud and methylated spirit. Red Spider Mite is indicated by browning of the leaves and fine webbing. Few insecticides on the domestic market are truly effective against this pest, and badly-affected plants should be burned.

Rotting roots are usually caused by over-watering or a compost that lacks drainage.

Blackened stems and leaves, or sections of the stems and leaves turning a yellow green, is usually caused by the plant being too cold. Occasionally, the same symptoms are caused by malnutrition.

10. August 2013 by admin
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