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Tall woody stem with offshoots of roots above soil, seems to need a lot of direct light. Beautifull green and purple waxy thick leaves in a rosetta shaped top. I have nursed this plant from worse condition then now and have seen it absolutly gloriouse but have moved and it has not liked the new conditions. I want to know everything I can about caring for this plant. How large of a pot, type of soil, how often to water, and artificial lighting tips as I only have a north facing window that this guy fits in and the light is really dim. The plant is around four feet and the top is probably a foot plus. It has trippled in size since I got it three years ago. I think it is an Aeonium Arboreum but do not know for sure and would like to. Help me bring my baby back to life!

Drought Smart Plants reply:

If this is an Aeonium, it will indeed need bright light – they originate in the Canary Islands and Tenerife, which are very tropical.

Their usual season consists of a warm spring with lots of rain, then a hot dry summer when they go into a dormant period, followed by a warm wet autumn.

They don’t experience any frost, so have not adapted to cold at all.

I’m a big fan of Aeonium, but when they reach these kinds of proportions, that’s a bit much, especially for a house plant.

Here’s what I recommend: Chop the top rosette off, yes, you heard – behead it. Leave the rosette on the top of some DRY soil. In a few weeks, it will grow roots and form a brand new plant, much more compact and beautiful.

Don’t throw out the stem – not yet anyway. If you stop watering it, and just ignore it for a while, you’ll see tiny sprouts emerge.

Each one of these will turn into a new rosette. You wanted lots, didn’t you? You’ll get them.

However, this plant needs way more light than what it’s getting to prevent it from getting the huge long gangly stem.

Also, something you should know is that once it blooms, that particular rosette will die, so you need some smaller ones to take its place.

Buy my Succulent Plant Propagation E-Book for more useful tips.

See this page for another Aeonium story:
What is this plant in our new home?.

Make sure you look at these pages too:

Succulent Care

Succulent Soil

Succulent Plant Propagation

Grow Lights

Happy Succulent Gardening!