Native to the Eastern parts of South Africa, Gasteria Flow is a unique and rare species of flowering succulent. It is also known as “Little Warty” due to its peculiar growth patterns. Gasteria Flow has thick green, waxy leaves that form a rosette shape and protrude outwards from the main stem in a fan-like shape. The leaves are mottled with bright white spots or stripes and are often covered in bumps, giving them a warty appearance. As the plant matures, it can produce long, graceful flowers on long thin stalks that resemble small bells with a pointed tip.
So, what facts do you need to know about Gasteria Flow? It is less popular than other succulents due to its slow growth rate and relatively high price tag. However, Gasteria Flow is an excellent choice for those looking for a unique and unusual houseplant that can tolerate some neglect. It prefers bright indirect sunlight and infrequent watering for the best results. Cultivated Gasteria flow is unlikely to bear flowers, but you may be lucky if you do everything right. It can grow to six feet tall and survive outdoors in USDA hardiness zones three through eight.
This blog post discusses everything you need to know about Gasteria Flow succulent. Read on to learn more.
Gasteria Flow: Description & Appearance
It is often mistaken for a Haworthia due to its similar appearance. The leaves are mottled with white spots or stripes, giving them an interesting texture and pattern.
Gasteria Flow can occasionally produce nectar-filled tubular pink, green, or orange flowers. However, young Gasteria Flow plants will bloom once they mature.
The succulent derives its name from the Latin term “gaster,” meaning “stomach.” This drought-tolerant succulent has a relatively slow growth rate and prefers slightly warm and dry climate conditions to thrive.
Gasteria Flow: Classification
As mentioned earlier, Gasteria Flow belongs to the Asphodelaceae family, and its scientific name is Gasteria fasciata. It belongs to the genus Gasteria, consisting of around 50 plant species native to Southern Africa.
The species is further divided into two varieties or subspecies: Gasteria fasciata var. fasciata and Gasteria fasciata var. poellnitziana.
The former variety features gray-green leaves with bright white spots, while the latter has green-gray leaves with a velvety texture and white stripes.
The succulent was first discovered in 1803 by botanist Johannes Burchell. Today, Gasteria Flow is widely grown as a decorative houseplant due to its attractive leaves and low maintenance.
Its common names include cow tongue, ox tongue, or lawyer’s tongue.
Gasteria Flow: Distribution and Habitat
Gasteria Flow is native to eastern parts of South Africa, particularly the Eastern Cape Province. It is often found growing on rocky slopes and hillsides in the Succulent Karoo Biome of South Africa.
However, it is now widely cultivated as a houseplant and can be found in most nurseries or online stores.
Pay close attention to the suitability of the climate and soil before investing in this succulent for your home, especially if you live outside Africa.
Gasteria Flow: Size and Growth Rate
Gasteria Flow is generally a slow-growing succulent. It can reach about 6-20 inches, depending on how well you care for it.
The succulent leaves are flat, stiff, and thick, with a rough texture covered in wax. The leaves resemble the shape of a tongue, explaining why it has many tongue-themed names.
The leaves can grow to be a foot long. The leaves usually grow in opposing pairs on young Gasteria Flow plants but change to a spiral formation as the plant matures. Mature plants grow clumps of rosettes that may reach a foot in diameter.
Gasteria Flow and Aloe/Haworthia: Similarities and Differences
Gasteria Flow resembles aloe and haworthia plants. Many confuse it for an aloe because it was initially included in the same genus as other aloe plants.
However, botanists realized there is a massive difference between these plants regarding leaf formation and configuration.
Generally, aloe plant leaves grow in a rosette formation, while Gasteria Flow leaves grow in opposing pairs or a loose spiral formation.
Young Gasteria plant leaves usually display opposing pairs of leaf formation that turn into a spiral formation as the plant matures.
Aloe plant leaves are relatively smooth, while Gasteria leaves are marked with white tubercle warts or bumps. They also have a relatively rough texture.
The flowers produced by these succulents also display massive distinctions. Gasteria Flow plant flowers grow in small clusters on one end of a relatively long stem, while aloe flowers tend to grow along the length of the flower stalk.
Gasteria flowers are tubular with inflated bases, while aloe flowers adopt a slim silhouette appearance. In fact, the names of these succulents are inspired by the shape of the flowers they produce.
Although Gasteria Flow is no longer in the same genus as aloe plants, the two succulents are similar in many ways.
For instance, these succulents belong to the same family and are native to South Africa. They also belong to one tribe, along with Bulbine, Poellnitzia, Astroloba, and Chortolirion.
Gasteria Flow: Care Guide
Gasteria Flow is easy to care for and can thrive indoors, even in low light conditions. It’s ideal for those who want a unique succulent requiring little attention or effort.
When caring for Gasteria Flow, use a lightweight soil mix and pot with enough drainage holes. This plant requires regular watering but allows the soil to dry out between watering sessions completely.
Gasteria Flow prefers bright indirect sunlight or partial shade exposure and requires temperatures between 65-85°F.
Feed your Gasteria Flow plants with a balanced liquid fertilizer once every two weeks during the growing season and reduce feeding during winter.
The succulent prefers normal indoor humidity levels and doesn’t need to be misted for humidity.
Low humidity is not a significant problem for these succulents, but you may experience issues with the plant in highly humid environments.
Combined with overwatering, excessively high humidity levels can easily trigger root rot and fungal infections.
The succulent can survive in the same pot for many years without issues. However, you should consider repotting your Gasteria Flow if you notice a significant decline in its growth rate.
The best time to repot your plant is in summer or spring since the warm conditions will compensate for any watering mistakes you might commit.
Ensure you repot the plant in a relatively shallow container with plenty of drainage holes. Also, repot the succulent with a well-draining soil mix, and remember to water it once you are done repotting.
Gasteria Flow is not known to be affected by pests or diseases, but you must watch out for signs of mealybugs, spider mites, scale insects, and root rot in case of overwatering.
To prevent any infestation or infection, regularly inspect your succulent for signs of pests and diseases and clean it with a damp cloth if needed. Pruning is only necessary if you want to maintain its size or shape.
Gasteria Flow: Flowering and Propagation
Gasteria Flow is a flowering succulent that produces small tubular flowers with inflated bases. The flowers can be pink or orange, usually in summer, particularly after rainy periods.
The Gasteria Flow plants primarily propagate through the offset method rather than seeds. You may need to repot your succulent to separate the offsets from the mother plant.
The offset should root within a month, and you can then repot it in a shallow pot with a well-draining soil mix.
Place the new plants in bright indirect sunlight and ensure you water them regularly but allow the soil to dry out before watering again.
Gasteria Flow: Toxicity
The succulent is classified as poisonous and should not be consumed. It contains saponin, which can cause gastrointestinal problems in humans and animals.
Accidental consumption of any part of the succulent may cause nausea, a loss of appetite, and vomiting.
Accidental consumption of Gasteria Flow must be dealt with promptly to avoid catastrophic outcomes.
It is also important to note that the leaves of Gasteria Flow may be covered with minute spines. So, keep it away from children or pets. If ingested, contact your veterinarian immediately for medical attention.
Buying Gasteria Flow
Remember that Gasteria can easily be crossed with Haworthias and aloe plants to produce hybrids. So, make sure you know what you are buying before purchasing.
Fortunately, the original succulent is readily available in the market, and you can find it in most nurseries or online stores.
The succulent usually comes with a colorful label, but if you need clarification on its identity, compare it with authentic Gasteria Flow images.
When buying the succulent, look for signs of pests or diseases, such as brown spots, wilting leaves, and webbing on the foliage.
If you encounter these problems, avoid that particular plant because it may also spread to other healthy plants in your collection.
Finally, ensure you buy a succulent with healthy foliage and roots. It should not be dry or underwatered. Otherwise, it may take a long time to recover from any damage.
The Bottom Line
Gasteria Flow is a unique, eye-catching succulent perfect for adding texture and color to any garden or indoor space.
Its robust care requirements make it an ideal choice for those who want to maintain a low-maintenance plant.
Whether you grow it indoors or outdoors, Gasteria Flow will be an attractive addition to your home.
Last update on 2023-12-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API