Flaming Katie

One of the most popular of all succulents is Kalanchoe blossfeldiana, or Flaming Katie (or Katy if you prefer).


The leaves are glossy and not super thick like some other succulent plants, and always look healthy even when the plant is not in bloom.

When Katie flowers, watch out. She reaches a whole new level of gorgeous. The leaves recede into the background and form a foil for the lovely and abundant flowers, held in a cluster.

Some varieties have double flowers, which look like little roses.

They come in many different colors, from palest pink or white, to golden yellow, to peach, orange, hot pink and red.


These flowers last a long time, only fading gradually after weeks. Cut them off when they’re all done, and in time they’ll bloom again.

You can trigger a new bloom cycle by letting the plant dry out almost completely, trimming back any leggy growth and giving it good light levels for the summer.

By September or so, they’ll be ready to set buds, so resume a fairly regular watering regime, fertilize the plant with some water soluble fertilizer, and see what happens.

With luck, they’ll flower again for the Christmas season.

This is why they’re rightfully so popular as Christmas succulents. They make ideal gifts, or a centerpiece on your table.

The odd issue can affect Kalanchoe blossfeldiana. There are a few fungal problems, such as mildew, that show on the leaves as grey dots which sometimes merge into extensive patches.

The remedy for it is fairly drastic; cut or pull the affected leaves off the plant, and dispose of them in the garbage, not in the compost. If leaves fall off the plant by themselves, clean them up immediately before the fungus spores get a chance to infect more plants.

One solution I’ve heard of but never tried is to spray the plant with water and bicarbonate of soda.

Fill a one liter spray bottle with tepid water and add a teaspoon of baking soda in it, shake well. Spray the affected parts of the plant with the mixture until it runs off.

Let it dry.

This will change the pH of the plant surface and make it difficult for the spores to attach to the leaves.

Find some other forms and species of Kalanchoe below:

These are contributed by other visitors…


clusters of scalloped leaves, long creeping stems 
This was labeled a Crassula when I bought it, but it doesn’t seem quite like a jade to me. Those scalloped leaves? Is that jade-like? It grew so …


Some say Christmas Cactus, but I’m not convinced… 
Large, waxy leaves near base of stalk. No sharp points on the leaves, instead are rounded. Stalk stems into smaller stalks holding reddish-pink flowers/buds. …


Four Petal Flowers 
My dad got some plants in the nursery but not sure what they are. We think they are succulents. The flowers are orange, red, or yellow.


Dark green rubbery leaves and very small yellow flowers 
It has dark rubbery leaves, a long stem and the leaves kind of look like a ladder going up and at the very top of the stem has tiny yellow flowers. …


broad scalloped fleshy leaves with little light green/white buds 
I purchased this little guy at the market. when i got home i realized it was without an identification label… i would like to know what kind of plant …


green oval leaves and small pink flowers 
long elephant like trunk. Green oval leaves. Tiny pink flowers Drought Smart Plants reply: Hi Lew-Ann, this is one of the most requested plant identifications …


Green leaves with scalloped pink edges & small pink flowers 
I’d love to know what this plant is. We got it in a flower basket and it’s so hardy and keeps growing and growing. It has green leaves with scalloped …


long, thick green stem,with small pink flowers 
I have had this plant for 10 years and don’t know what it is. This year it bloomed for the first time. Need to find out if I should take it out or …


top down at newest leaves
dark green plant 
Not sure if mine is a succulent but it acts like one. Dark green leaves that are waxy and variegated. When I bought it at the florist it had small …


Long stemmed with frilly edged leaves
Hi! This website is amazing!!! My friend was going to throw away this plant, so I took it home. I think it is some kind of succulent, because …