Pachyphytum oviferum [Pak-ee-fy-tum, oh-vee-fer-um] is a succulent plant in the genus Pachyphytum.
The Pink Moonstone their common name are native to the rocky cliffs of Mexico, in the state of San Luis Potosi.
The name for the plant species comes from the Greek word “pachys” meaning “thick” and “phyton” meaning “plant”, referring to the uniquely thick leaves.
The other half of the name “oviferum” is derived from Latin words “ovum” meaning “egg” and “ferum” meaning “carrying”, again referring to the unconventional shape of the leaves.
Other than moonstones, Pachyphytum oviferum is also known as the sugaralmond plant or sugar almond plant.
This is again a reference to the unique appearance and beauty of the leaves.
Pachyphytum Oviferum Plant Care
Size and Growth
- Moonstone succulents reach up to 4″ inches in height and spread up to 12″ or more inches in width.
- They bear white stems with bluish-green to bluish-purple leaves.
- These pigmented pale blue-green leaves are 2″ inches long, 1″ inch wide, and ½” thick.
- The stems are white and 12″ inches long.
- Along with leaves, these stems boast vivid inflorescences.
Flowering and Fragrance
The flowers of succulent Pachyphytum oviferum plants appear in winter to early spring.
These blooms come in an intense red-orange color and are surrounded by fleshy sepals, having the same shade as the foliage.
The scarlet flowers are also admired for their bell shape.
Aside from flowers, another notable feature of these succulents is their chubby egg-shaped leaves.
Each stem has at least 15 such leaves with hints of a blue-green or bluish-purple color.
Light and Temperature
Moonstone plants require full sun along the coast for a well-balanced development.
These rare succulents may also need some shade during extremely hot weather.
These unconventional beauties fall in the USDA hardiness zone from 10a to 11b.
These include areas with temperatures ranging from 30° to 50° degrees Fahrenheit (-1° to 10° C).
According to botanists, moonstone plants are cold-resistant to some extent.
They tend to survive in chilly days, ensuring the temperatures range from the mid to high 20° degrees Fahrenheit (-7° C).
However, the prolonged period of cold weather freezes the stems and leaves.
Watering and Feeding
Pachyphytum oviferum is a low-maintenance plant and doesn’t have excessive water requirements.
The plant needs water only when the soil is dry.
It’s ideal to water to a depth of 3″ to 4″ inches.
Beware of overwatering as it damages the roots and rots them away.
Unlike many plants, Pachyphytum oviferum doesn’t require frequent feeding.
It only needs to be fed once a year, ideally at the beginning of the spring season.
Soil and Transplanting
Moonstones don’t perform well in moist, soggy soil.
The best soil option for them is sand, regular potting soil, or pumice/perlite soil.
A mixture of these three will be an ideal potting medium for the live plant.
A better alternative is a succulent potting mix.
It is better to grow succulents in an indoor container during cold weather.
First off, put some gravel at the bottom of a plant pot and fill it with a potting mix.
The container for transferring Pacyphytum oviferum doesn’t have to be too deep.
Next, plant the stems deeper into the pot and cover it with enough sand.
Water the plant well enough for the soil to become moist, not wet.
Place a thick layer of black pebbles over the soil for some visual appeal.
Make sure to place the pot container in a sunny spot for the right dosage of sunlight.
Grooming and Maintenance
- Moonstone succulents strive and thrive with little to no pruning.
- Succulent cuttings are only necessary when removing dead leaves.
- Getting rid of damaged leaves helps prevent the plant from rotting away.
- Never touch healthy leaves as the body oils often leave behind strange marks.
- This low-maintenance plant likes to be both indoors and outdoors.
- When grown outdoors, ensure the soil is sandy and well-drained.
How To Propagate Moonstones
A leaf cutting is the most common method for propagating Pachyphytum oviferum.
It works the same way as a stem cutting.
- First of all, cut a young leaf from the middle of the rosette and place it outside in an open area for a day.
- Afterward, drip the bottom of the leaf into the rooting powder.
- Now gently place the leaf into potting soil.
- Make sure the soil is slightly moist.
- Soon enough, a new rosette will pop up from the base of the leaf.
Moonstones Pests and Diseases
The most common pest to affect pink moonstones is succulent mealybugs.