Echeveria lilacina [ech-eh-VER-ee-a ly-las-SY-nuh] also known as the ghost Echeveria hails from Nuevo Leon in the northern part of Mexico. The plant is also a native Texan.
Its botanical name, Echeveria lilacina comes from the fact that its dusty leaves carry a lilac hue.
Like all Echeveria plant types, these perennial succulent plants are members of the family Crassulaceae (krass-yoo-LAY-see-ee) and the subfamily Sedoideae.
Echeveria Lilacina Care
How Big Does Lilacina Growth
This a slow-growing plant seldom attains a height greater than 6″ inches. In ideal settings, the plant may grow to 8″-10″ inches tall with a and spread of up to one foot.
The spoon-shaped, fleshy leaves are an attractive shade of silvery gray that takes on a more lilac hue during the cooler months of autumn.
More sun will also deepen the lavender/purplish color. The leaves grow in a symmetrical rosette shape reaching widths as 10″-12″ inches across.
Flowering & Fragrance
The plant produces fragrant, coral or pale pink flowers at the end of short, arching, reddish stems.
The plant may flower at any time from late in the winter to early spring.
Light & Temperature Needs
As with most succulents and cacti, lilacina Echeverias like plenty of sunlight and warmth. The plant is winter hardy in USDA hardiness zones 10-11.
Outdoors it does well in full sun or very light partial shade. Kept indoors, a bright sunny window is an ideal setting.
Generally speaking, more sun exposure produces better performance, brighter colors and stronger, sturdier leaves and stems.
Watering & Feeding Requirements
Take care to water from below, and only when the soil is nearly dry. Avoid getting water in the leaves, and never allow water to sit on the rosette.
During the spring and summer months, fertilize using a water-soluble liquid fertilizer with a low to medium nitrogen content. Follow packaging instructions carefully.
Do not fertilize during the winter months.
Soil & Transplanting
The best soil to use with this succulent plant is a prepared succulent or cactus mix. Any soil you use should be porous and allow for sharp drainage.
The plant produces offsets from time to time. When this happens, separate them from the mother plant and repot the whole plants. Repotting is best done early in the spring.
Wait until the soil dries completely and then take the plant and its offsets from the pot.
Knock the dry soil away from the roots and check the roots for dead or rotten spots. Cut away these areas, and treat the cuts with fungicide.
At this point, either leave the plants out exposed to air for a minimum of 24 hours or up to a week. Repot into fresh, dry potting mix suitable for cactus or succulents.
If you repot immediately, withhold water for about a week. Once this time passes begin watering lightly.
Grooming & Maintenance
Lower leaves die off naturally from time to time. When this happens, remove them promptly.
Dead leaves create hiding places for pests such as mealybugs and aphids.
How To Propagate Ghost Echeveria
Echeveria lilacina does not produce large numbers of offsets. Some individual plants may remain solitary throughout their lives.
If the plant produces pups, separate them from the parent plant and plant in individual pots or garden spaces per the repotting instructions above.
Lilacina Ghost Echeveria Main Pest or Disease Problems
Like all plants in the genus Echeveria, they are easy to grow and care for as long as you:
- Have a light touch with the water
- Provide plenty of warmth, sunlight
- Plant in well-draining cactus soil.
Excess moisture leads to fungal disease and rot, which will kill your plant.
Provide good ventilation and adequate spacing to allow for good air flow around the plants.
This single step will go far to minimize the risks of fungal and bacterial infections and pest infestation.
Be especially vigilant against high humidity during cool weather.
Cacti and succulents are generally pest free as long as you maintain a healthy environment.
Too much water, too little sun or exposure to contaminated plants can lead to infestation by the usual suspects:
- Fungus Gnats
- Spider mites
- Root mealybugs
- Scale insects
For more in-depth information read our article on common succulent pests.
What Are Pests on Succulents and What Can You Do about Them?
Is The Ghost Lilacina Considered Toxic or Poisonous?
According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) a very similar plant, Blue Echeveria is non-toxic, and this is quite likely to apply to Ghost Echeveria, as well.
Even so, keep your pets, kids, and plants safe by limiting access.
Is The Echeveria Lilacina Ghost Succulent Considered Invasive?
This slow-growing succulent is not considered invasive.
Suggested Ghost Echeveria Uses
This plant is suitable as a houseplant in all climates.
It does well as a container or patio plant or set out into the garden during warmer weather and brought indoors to overwinter during the cold months of the year.
This species of Echeveria is quite drought tolerant. In USDA hardiness zones 10-11, it does well in xeriscaping and will grow happily on rocky outcroppings.