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How to Grow Dyckia

Dyckia brevifolia
Dyckia brevifolia

Dyckia is a terrestrial bromeliad with silvery-gray and occasionally reddish-brown spike-toothed leaves and thorny tips. The leaves are borne in rosettes. Orange flowers appear atop slender stems in spring.

Dyckia is often grown as a houseplant, but it grows well in tropical and subtropical gardens and in desert gardens where temperatures are not cold in winter. Dyckia must be grown in full sun in well-drained gritty, humus-rich soil.

Dyckia is a genus of evergreen succulent bromeliads native to South America.

Get to Know Dyckia 

  • Plant type: Terrestrial bromeliad
  • Growing zones and range: Zones 13-15
  • Optimal growing temperature: day, 68°F (20°C) and up in summer, somewhat cooler in winter; night, 60° to 65°F (16° to 18°C). 
  • Height and width: 8 to 32 inches (20-80cm) tall, 5 to 16 inches (13-40cm) wide depending on the variety.
  • Foliage: Linear to lance-shaped or short, triangular, spiny-margined, stiff, often gray-scaly leaves; spiny leaves form rosettes up to 16 inches (41 cm) across.
  • Flowers: Tubular yellow to orange flowers; bears 15 to 20 waxy flowers on 12- to 24-inch (30 to 61cm) stalks.
  • Bloom time: Summer 
  • Uses: Houseplant, tropical garden, desert garden
  • Common name: Miniature Agave, sawblade plant 
  • Botanical name: Dyckia
  • Family name: Bromeliaceae
  • Origin: South America

Where to Plant Dyckia 

  • Light indoors: Give Dyckia full sun from southern exposure. Air circulation is important. 
  • Light outdoors: Grow Dyckia in full sun.
  • Soil indoors: Grow Dyckia in a terrestrial bromeliad mix. 
  • Soil outdoors: Sharly drained, gritty, humus-rick soil

When to Plant Dyckia 

  • Set Dyckia outdoors in a tropical or subtropical climate any time during the year.

Planting and Spacing Dyckia 

  • Space Dyckia 5 to 16 inches (13-40cm) apart depending on the variety.

How to Water and Feed Dyckia 

  • Water: Water Dyckia moderately from latre spring to autumn. Keep the soil barely moist, allowing soil to dry moderately between waterings. Humidity, 35% or less. 
  • Feeding: Feed Dyckia monthly, with mild liquid fertilizer. Avoid oil-based products such as fish emulsion. Apply to soil after watering; never fertilize a dry plant. 

Dyckia Care 

  • Dyckia growth slows in winter. Reduce water and frequency of feeding. Keep the plant in a cool place. 

Dyckia Pests and Diseases 

  • Check Dyckia for scale insects. 

Dyckia Propagation 

  • Divide Dyckia clumps in late spring or early summer. Replant offsets
  • Dyckia can be grown form seed in warm soil in early spring.

Dyckia Varieties to Grow 

  • Dyckia brevifolia, sawblade plant. Glossy, dark green leaves with sharp spines; bright orange flowers. 
  • D. fosteriana. Grows 8 inches (20cm) tall and 5 inches (13cm) wide; flat rosettes of silver-gray leaves; bright orange flowers in late spring. 
  • D. platphylla. Grows to 32 inches (80cm) tall and 16 inches (40m) wide; dark green leaves with white scaled on undersides; bears bright yellow flowers in late spring.
  • D. remotiflora. Dense rosettes of narrow triangular leaves covered with gray-green scales; dark orange flowers in late spring.

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