How to Care for a Rose of Jericho Plant
It may seem hard to believe but there are a few plants that can survive months – even years without water. Also called the ‘Resurrection plants,’ these foliage are capable of coming back to life when exposed to water. Until then, the plant remains dry and dormant.
The Rose of Jericho is one such example of these plants. Native to the deserts of Northeast Africa and Middle East, the plant belongs to the Brassicaceae family. It is also known as the Anastatica and boasts a long rich history.
Here, let me share with you some Rose of Jericho Plant Facts, along with care tips!
- 1 Rose of Jericho History
- 2 Rose of Jericho Plant Care
- 3 Uses of the drained water
- 4 Rose of Jericho Propagation
- 5 Common problems with the plant
- 6 Ready to Try!
Rose of Jericho History
The plant gets its name from the ancient city of Palestine named Canaan, called Jericho in the modern day. This is the city where both Moses and Jesus were born and this is the same city from where this plant has got its historical significance, hence the name “Rose of Jericho”.
Even today, the plant holds great importance in the religion of Christianity, Judaism and even Islam. People believe that keeping the plant in your home can bring good omen, mental piece, and purity in your life. It is also said that the Jericho protects you and your closed ones from the evil eye and negativity.
According to some beliefs, the resurrection plant increases income if you keep it in your house. It is suggested that you keep the coins where they will be concealed when the plant closes. Water it until it opens again. Take the coins back and put it with your other currency notes. Sooner or later, your finances will gain abundance.
The plant is sometimes used in spells to resurrect romance. As they say, there is one person in everyone’s life who is very special to them. Keeping the plant in your home will help grow feelings in that person’s heart for you – especially if that special someone has come to meet you.
Since the Rose of Jericho history is connected with the resurrection of Jesus Christ, it is beneficial for pregnancy and childbirth too. Some beliefs say that the plant should be kept beneath the mother’s pillow to ensure safety of both – the unborn child and the mother.
The plant is used to quicken labor and the speed of the plant’s revival is sometimes used to predict the outcome of childbirth.
The Rose of Jericho uses also includes treatment of fatigue and uterine hemorrhaging in ancient Egyptian medicine. There are some incident of it being used in herbal medicine as well – to treat common cold and symptoms of flu.
Two Plants with Same Name
You would also be surprised to know that the plant is associated with another plant that resembles its features very closely.
Titled as the false Rose of Jericho or the dinosaur plant, this variety belongs to an entirely different family called the Selaginellaceae and genus Selaginella. It is native to Chihuahuan desert of Mexico, New Mexico, and Arizona.
However, the false plant is cheaper and easy to find. It is considered more attractive with emerald green foliage – which is why many people chose to go with this style instead of the authentic one.
But regardless of the one you select, remember that both the plants require same care. Similar to the true type, the fake Jericho can also revive itself, even after staying dormant for years.
Related article: Hoya Plant: The Ultimate Guide to Care and Maintenance for the Wax Plant
Rose of Jericho Plant Care
Because of their ‘hard to kill’ nature, the plant is very to maintain – and you can easily get away with a lot of neglect. You can even keep it in a dark cupboard for years and it will return to its original shape with a few watering.
The Plant’s Appearance
Unlike the name, the plant is not exactly shaped like a Rose. However, when it blooms, it does resemble the Rose flower.
As long as the physical description of the plant is concerned, it is a small herb, gray in color, producing small white flowers. Rose of Jericho plant facts suggest that it can grow to about 15 centimeters tall.
The plant does not need soil to grow and can easily be planted in water. Just take a big bowl and fill it with lots of pebbles. Add water until the pebbles submerge and place the plant so the roots touch the water.
It is best to use distilled water for the Jericho plant. If you are using tap water, let it sit overnight for the toxins to evaporate.
You can use soil for plantation as well. But make sure to keep the soil moist at all times. It should also be remembered that the resurrection plants can grow quiet large when grown in a pot of soil.
Another trick is to grow the Jericho as an ‘epiphytic plant.’ This way, the Rose of Jericho uses the support of other plant and only require regular misting.
There is no need to water the plant. However, you have to change the water used for its planting daily or every alternate day.
It is also a good idea to give the plant a ‘water-free’ day every week. This will not only enhance the plant’s health but save the plant from molding and rotting.
Environment for the Plant
The plant is most flexible and best acts at room temperatures between 5 to 35 degrees C. it doesn’t like sudden fluctuations in temperature so don’t make a habit of changing its location frequently.
When indoors, be careful of any open vents or windows for too long. This is because the heat or cold from outside can negatively affect the plant. The best result tends to be when you place them in room with indirect but bright sunlight.
The Rose of Jericho plant care does not have any special humidity requirements. The ideal USDA hardiness zone for the Jericho is 8a to 11. See the map here to check the zone according to your location.
The plant is a tough one and does not have any need for fertilizer. Simply change the water regularly and watch your plant survive for generations.
There is no need to prune this plant. But if you like, you can remove a few dead leaves here and there to make it more appealing.
Make sure any pruning you do is done when the plant is in its ‘awake’ stage.
Uses of the drained water
Since the plant is associated with good luck and religious instances, its water can be used to spread positivity in the household. Don’t throw away the water. Instead:
- You can add that water in the cleaning bucket of your house to spread positive omen, good health and ensure safety of the whole house.
- Spray the water around the house, especially in corners for betterment in the professional field.
- Make a cross with water on the front door for the protection of the house.
- Spray it on jeweler to keep it safe and protect you from financial trouble.
Rose of Jericho Propagation
It is highly recommended that you propagate the plant in case you lose it to an unforeseen situation. It is also the cheapest way to get a copy of this plant.
The Rose of Jericho propagation can be done in two ways. One by buying seeds and sprinkling it into moist soil. And the second one through division.
The division is by far the most popular way of propagation. Just cut away a few stems from a plant in its dormancy stage and place it in a container filled with gravel/pebbles and water.
You can also plant the same in loose soil.
New growth will start appearing in a few days.
Common problems with the plant
Some possible problems you can expect with your plant include:
The Plant Remains Brown
Although, chances of this happening are very less but some resurrection plants are sold in ‘dead’ form. This means you cannot revive them back and they will remain brown – regardless of your efforts.
The Revival of Rose of Jericho
Generally, the plant becomes alive in 4 hours. But if the plant is old and not in contact with water for a long time, it can take up to 24 hours or even weeks. However, you will see some signs of ‘resurrection’ during that time.
And if it is not happening, there are a few possible reasons including:
- The plant is dead
- The water you are using is too cold
- The light is insufficient
Make alterations to see if the situation improves.
Rose of Jericho Smell and Slimy Condition
Usually, the plant smells a little musty when you dehydrate it. But if the Rose of Jericho smells unpleasant, chances are you have kept it in the water for too long.
Give it a water-less day and cut off the slimy parts to enhance its growth. And remember to change the water daily to prevent any future incidents.
Similar to other indoor houseplants, the resurrection plants are also vulnerable to mealy bugs, whiteflies, and spider mites.
If you ever see any sign of insects on your plant – any plant, make sure to isolate them from other foliage and apply insecticidal soap/spray to get rid of them.
Ready to Try!
The Rose of Jericho is a unique and special plant, which is great for beginners as well as those born with a ‘green thumb.’ in fact, I recommend trying it at least once to experience the magical revival process.
And best of all, you don’t even need a garden for it! Simply take a bowl and watch it unfold!
Give it a try and let us know your experience!