Such a Handsome Succulent: Zebra Haworthia

Zebra haworthia is a handsome small succulent that hails from South Africa. As an outdoor landscape plant, it’s suitable only in very warm (Zone 10 or more), dry climates. But it makes an excellent houseplant anywhere.

Indoors, zebra haworthia does well in east or west windows and tolerates cool, dry conditions in winter. It forms an expanding rosette of fleshy, triangular, mint green leaves with prominent bands of raised white bumps on their back sides.

Zebra haworthia looks great in single pots or grouped with other succulents in shallow dish gardens.

Common name: Zebra haworthia

Botanical name: Haworthia fasciata

Plant type: Evergreen succulent

Zones: 10 or warmer (outdoors); anywhere as houseplant

Height: 4 to 6 inches

Family: Xanthorrhoeaceae (previously in Liliaceae)


Growing conditions
  • Sun: Outdoors, partial or filtered sun; indoors, bright indirect light
  • Soil: Extremely well-drained, coarse textured (gravelly)
  • Moisture: Limited watering

Care

  • Mulch: None, or a thin layer of grit or crushed rock
  • Pruning: None
  • Fertilizer: Diluted soluble fertilizer as needed

Propagation

  • Offsets


Pests and diseases

  • Mealybugs are occasional pests

Garden notes

  • Move zebra haworthia outdoors to a partially shaded location in summer; move back indoors when night temperatures drop below 50°F.
  • Be sure to use a well-draining potting mix designed especially for cacti and succulents to prevent overly wet root conditions, which can lead to rot.

All in the family

  • Zebra haworthia is a member of Xanthorrhoeaceae, a family containing about 900 species primarily in Africa and Eurasia.
  • Many genera, including Haworthia, were once lumped into the lily family (Liliaceae), but recent taxonomic research has redistributed many of them to other families.
  • Members of Xanthorrhoeaceae vary widely in appearance and include some, like Aloe, that look quite similar to Haworthia and others, like daylily (Hemerocallis), that have almost no family resemblance.

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