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Cañón de la Mano (Buenavista de Cuéllar, Gro.)
Origin and Habitat: Echeveria grisea occurs in a more or less limited area in Guerrero. Mexico.
Type: Cañon de la Mano, near Iguala, in eastern Guerrero, Mexico.
Altitude range: About 700-900 metres above sea level.
Habitat and ecology: Echeveria grisea thrives in crevices and holes on shady cliffs composed of marble (Cañon de la Mano, Guerrero) and possibly also on lava fields (Michoacan de Ocampo, near Uruapan). In the Canyon de la Mano the vegetation is rather tropical, as witnessed by such plants as Achimenes and Begonia unifolia. Atop the cliffs grows Sedum dendroideum, and Thompsonella platyphylla occurs on hot dry rocks at the edge of the railroad tracks. Other plant in the same area comprises: Mammillaria nunezii ssp. bella, Agave angustiarum, the Amapa tree, Tabebuya rosea, Hechtia sp. and Bursera sp., The delicately pink flowers of Echeveria grisea are pollinated by a tiny hummingbird.
- Echeveria grisea E.Walther
Echeveria grisea E.Walther
Cact. Succ. J. (Los Angeles) 9: 165 1938
Description: Echeveria grisea is a low-growing rosette forming succulents similar to Echeveria fulgens or Echeveria obtusifolia but differs in its thicker leaves. It is seldom seen in cultivation and is considered one of the less attractive Echeverias of the Gibbiflorae group, nevertheless its flowers are a lovely pink colour and quite decorative.
Stem: Evident, usually short, unbranched, 2 to 3 cm thick.
Leaves: About 12, forming a lax rosette, 10 to 15 cm long, 5 to 8 cm broad, broadly obovate-spathulate, at apex rounded and minutely mucronulate, thick, flat or very slightly concave above, more or less undulate at edges, at base narrowed into short petiole 18 mm wide. Colour corydalis-green to asphodel-green, pruinose, occasionally spotted deep purplish vinaceous.
Inflorescences: One or two, to 50 cm tall, paniculate, with three to five short, often few-flowered branches. Peduncle stout, erect; bracts numerous, ascending, oblong-obovate, mucronate, to 5 cm long, 2 cm broad, turgid, subterete at base. Rachis of flowering branches angularly divaricate, occasionally 2-branched. Upper bracts linear, terete, very turgid. Bracts as the leaves green, pruinose, occasionally spotted deep purplish.
Flowers: On pedicels stout, to 4 mm long. Sepals light celadine-green, subequal, longest to 7 mm long, widely spreading, turgid and terete, linear-ovate, obtusish. Corolla conoid-urceolate, to 13 mm long, 9 mm in basal diameter, 6 mm wide at mouth, pink outside at base, at edges and tips of petals strawberry-pink, inside pale seashell-pink. Petals thick and fleshy, nearly straight, bluntly keeled, with prominent basal hollow inside. Stamens 7 mm long. Nectaries narrowly lunate-reniform, to 2.5 mm broad. Styles pink to carmine.
Blooming season: December and January.
Chromosome number: The species is diploid (n = 27).
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Echeveria grisea E. Walther, Cactus and Succ. Jour. Amer., vol. 9, p. 165, 1938
2) Eric Walther “Echeveria” California Academy of Sciences, 1972
3) Echeveria grisea in: Haseltonia: Yearbook of the Cactus and Succulent Society of America, Edizioni 6-10, The Society, 1998
4) Echeveria grisea E. Walther. <http://www.crassulaceae.com> Downloaded on 29 January 2015.
Cultivation and Propagation: Echeveria grisea is a summer-growing and relatively easy plant but sensitive to frost.
Soil: Use a very porous soil, which will allow quick drainage.
Repotting: If potted, repot them preferably in the spring, if their roots become cramped. Generally, they should be repotted every other year in order to provide fresh soil. However, this doesn't necessarily mean they'll need larger containers. F
Fertilization: Slow release fertilisers with a low to moderate nitrogen content are adequate for the spring and summer growing seasons, and additional fertiliser applications would not required until spring.
Exposure: It grows in shade but - generally speaking - the more light a plant gets the better it will display its colours and shape. However, when moving plants from lower light conditions into full sun, be wary of sun scorch, most easily avoided by ensuring plants are well-watered before moving them on a cloudy day.
Watering: They can tolerate extended dry periods and survive drought without the need for watering, but they will grow stronger if they receive adequate moisture during their growing season, and never allowing the plant to remain waterlogged (root rot sensitive).
Ventilation: Good air movement is important for minimising pest and disease risks, and avoiding excessive humidity in cool winter conditions is important to successfully growing Echeveria in the nursery environment.
Hardiness: It is best overwintered at 5-10 °C. With the cooler autumn temperatures tending to make their foliage colours become more intense than those of the active summer growing season.
Pest & disease: Aphids like this plant (and all flowering Echeveria).
Propagation: Leaves can be removed, in order to attempt leaf propagation, it is also a common practice to collect the leaves on the flower stem. However this is not one of the easiest species to root, as many such cuttings will dry out without producing a plantlet, but with perseverance it is likely to get a few new plants.
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