Adenium Care Sheet:


Adeniums are succulent plants from the African continent and the Arabian Peninsula. They are grown for their thickened stems and root structures and their beautiful flowers. Here in the arid southwest, adeniums are best grown outside in containers and not in the ground. Bright light and warm temperatures are requirements for good growth.


Bright light to full sun, with a maximum of 50% shade, is best for adeniums during their growing season (usually March through November). If grown under too low of light, the plants will grow long and leggy and will not flower. Plants in pots over 10 inches in size thrive in full sun with extra water, but will also grow well in light shade. During winter, adeniums are dormant, unless kept in a warm greenhouse, and usually lose their leaves, so they can be over-wintered indoors in a bright location, or on a warm, covered porch.


During the warm season, adeniums will respond with rapid growth, in bright light, with frequent, regular waterings. This can be as often as three times per week, assuming very bright light conditions. However, they will also survive, with little growth or flowering, with summer watering as little as once a month. During the summer, a light application of fertilizer (any water-soluble brand will work) on your actively growing plants will enhance the appearance and flowering of adeniums. Two to three times a summer is adequate. Adeniums should not be watered during winter (November through March), except for 6 “ pots and smaller, which should be watered once a month.


Adeniums should be protected at temperatures below fifty. They will not die back until freezing (32F), but especially if wet, adeniums are subject to root rot, when the temperatures dip into the 40’s. This is particularly true for Adenium somalense and its hybrids, which need to be extremely dry throughout the winter. At these lower temperatures, most adeniums will drop their leaves, thus lowering the need for water.


A good cactus mix should always be used in potting adeniums. Good drainage is imperative and all pots should have a drainage hole. Any pot shape will work, keeping in mind that the deeper pots hold more soil and because of that will take longer to dry out. Any type of pot will also work for adeniums, with clay pots drying out faster than either stoneware or plastic.