How to Grow Desert Rose in Florida - Guide

Desert Rose in Florida

In this article, I will share my experience on how to grow Desert Rose (Adenium) in Florida.

Why am I especially focusing on Florida here? Because, if you try to grow and take care of Desert Rose in Florida, then you will need to take care of several things. After reading this guidance, you will be able to grow the best Desert Rose in your home garden.

I went to the nursery with my wife to buy some plants. It was my wife's idea to bring this plant to our home garden. (She was saying "I want that Admin plant". Even I didn't know the name of that plant at that time). After getting back home I searched in Google lens and find out we were wrong about the name of this plant.

Can we grow Desert Rose (Adenium obesum) in Florida?

The answer is Yes. Yes, you can grow this flowering plant in Florida as the climate and weather of Florida are suitable for it. But Florida is not a small place, so the weather varies from city to city. You just need to make sure that you protect this flower carefully in wintertime.

It will bloom mostly in summer. This plant loves sunlight and warm weather. That's why its actual origin is from Africa and some warm parts of Asia.

Information Table for this plant

Aspect Information
Scientific Name Adenium obesum
Height 3-10 feet
Lifespan Over 20 years
Watering Infrequent, allow soil to dry between waterings
Fertilizer Monthly during the growing season
Winter Care Protect from frost, move indoors or use frost cloth
Size Medium to large shrub or small tree
Propagation From seeds or stem cuttings
Pruning Prune for shape and size control
Flower Color Various colors including pink, red, and white
Blooming Time Mostly in summer, but in Florida you can see blooming throughout the year
Plant Type Succulent shrub or small tree
Toxicity Potentially toxic if ingested, keep away from pets and children
Soil Type Well-draining cactus or succulent mix

Can we grow Desert Rose from Seeds?

Yes, we can easily grow this plant from seeds.

You can check my separate detailed article on this: How to Grow Desert Rose from Seeds

Let me tell you the story of my garden. Last year, I found my desert rose plant had something on the stem and it looks like a boomerang disc. At that time, I did not know that inside that thing there were a lot of seeds of desert rose flower.

I am sharing a picture of the seeds of Desert Rose:

Desert rose Seeds
Desert rose seeds

So it dried within a month and after the rainy season, a lot of little desert rose saplings were below my plant.

Here I am sharing the photo of the little saplings that are grown from seeds:

Planting and taking care

I am assuming that you have brought your plant in a container and the soil is wrapped around the roots. I will let you know when to plant, how to plant, how to take care of it, and how to get beautiful flowers from Desert Rose.

The best time to plant Desert Rose in Florida

In Florida, spring will be a good choice to sow seeds. But if you have already saplings to plant then you are free to plant them anytime you want. But friendly advice is "avoid planting it in winter".

The Perfect location to plant it

  • Planting it in a pot: If you are planting it in a pot, choose a medium-sized pot so that it can easily spread its roots in the soil. You will need to repot (change the pot) every 3 to 5 years. The Desert Rose's growth rate is very slow, which is a positive aspect for both indoor and potted plants. Considering the weather and climate in Florida, it is advisable to bring the desert rose plant indoors in a pot.
  • Planting it in the ground: This is a better choice for the growth of the Desert Rose. However, the only problem is that you will need to take extra care during wintertime.
Desert Rose in a Pot
Desert Rose in a Pot

Should I cut the branches or prune them?

If you are planning to increase the flowering then pruning is essential. If you prune from the top branches, it will generate more branches and you can get your desired shape by pruning. More branches will give you more flowers.

Friendly tip: At the time of breaking a branch it may hurt you as well as a plant lover, but in the future, it will grow more branches from the break point. ( I did it once and the result was impressive)

How much water should I give to my Desert Rose?

As you can see the name of the flower contains the word "desert". You don't need to water this plant daily. It can survive and grow well in dry soil. It is better to water 3 days a week. And make sure that there is a proper drainage system in the soil. Excessive moisture in the soil can destroy the roots and it will cause yellow leaves.


Keep it in the sun as much as possible. You can place your Desert Rose indoors at night only and put it in the sunlight all day. (For a potted plant)

For grounded plants, just make sure that your plant is not getting shaded by other plants, walls, or objects.

Thanks to the climate of Florida! It's a sunshine state which is pretty good for desert rose.

Fertilizer that is suitable for Desert Rose

10-10-10 or 5-10-10 NPK is suitable for this plant. (If you are not good at this then you can show this to any fertilizer shop. They will guide you)

But if you want to avoid chemical fertilizer and use homemade fertilizer then you can do this:

Dig the soil at a distance of 5 inches from the bottom of the plant. Put a fish or bone powder in the hole and bury it.

Do the same for pot plants but in that case, put the bone or fish mixed with the soil before planting.

Note: Mix a little bit of ant killer powder in the soil. It will help you to keep away insects and ants from the fish or bone.

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