12 Gasteria Succulent Types with Names and Pictures
Some links in this post may be affiliate links
Gasteria are succulent plants which bear thick, hard, succulent "tongue-shaped" leaves and go by the common names Ox-tongue, Cow-tongue, Lawyer's Tongue and sometimes Mother-in-law's Tongue.
The leaves are arranged in two rows forming a fan-like shape and as it gets older an untidy rosette is formed.
In young Gasteria succulents the leaves are flat strap-shaped and occur in an alternate (spiral) pattern, with each leaf arising at a different point (node) on the stem.
The color of leaves in Gasteria plants vary from dark-green to light-green. Some are spotted with light shades of green or grey-green.
The inflorescence in Gasteria Plants is unique with a curved, stomach-shaped flowers hanging from inclined racemes. This characteristic inflorescence has given this genus its name Gasteria from 'Gaster' which is Latin for stomach.
The Gasteria Species are mostly native to Eastern Cape Province of South Africa and extends into the far south-west corner of Namimbia and the Lebombo mountains of Swaziland.
There are as many as 100 names of Gasteria species listed, but, current studies tend to agree that there are between 16 and 23 species.
Generally, Gasteria grow best in in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, fertile, well-drained soil.
If you would like to add these succulents to your collection, Gasteria plants are available online at Etsy. Buy Gasteria Plants online from Etsy.
12 Gasteria Succulent Varieties for Indoor Growing
1. Gasteria baylissiana
Gasteria baylissiana is a dwarf succulent plant whose strap-shaped leaves are swollen, convex, rough, leathery and densely covered in tiny, white, truncate tubercles.
The leaves are arranged in two rows forming a fan-like shape which become elongated in shade while in sunnier conditions they remain short and compact.
Gasteria baylissiana is an easy care plant which thrives in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, rich, well-drained soil. Read more on how to grow and care for Gasteria baylissiana.
2. Gasteria disticha
Gasteria disticha is a dwarf succulent plant whose strap-shaped leaves are arranged in two rows forming a fan-like shape. The leaves are green and have white spots arranged in irregular transverse bands.
The Gasteria disticha plant often has leaves which undulate slightly, have wavy margins and a rough, mat surface.
Gasteria disticha thrives in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, rich, well-drained soil. Learn more on how to grow and care for Gasteria disticha.
3. Gasteria rawlinsonii
Gasteria rawlinsonii is an unusual Gasteria plant in that it grows long leafy stems which often hang downwards and the leaves are dark-green and edged with tiny black teeth, unlike in other Gasteria plants.
Gasteria rawlinsonii is native to Eastern Cape, South Africa where it is found growing hanging on cliff faces in shady ravines in well-drained sandstone soils.
Gasteria rawlinsonii thrives in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, fertile, well-drained soil. Learn how to grow and care for Gasteria rawlinsonii.
4. Gasteria brachyphylla
Gasteria brachyphylla is a small succulent plant whose strap-shaped leaves, arranged in two rows forming a fan-like shape are very shiny and smooth. The leaves are green and have white spots arranged in irregular transverse bands.
The name "Brachyphylla" means "wide and short leaves" which is in reference its wide and short leaves. The plant is a profuse bloomer and the flowers are pink.
Gasteria brachyphylla thrives in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, rich, well-drained soil. Read more on how to grow and care for Gasteria brachyphylla.
5. Gasteria pillansii
Gasteria pillansii is a small succulent plant whose green, strap-shaped leaves, arranged in two rows forming a fan-like shape, are rough with tiny tubercles.
Gasteria pillansii is native to the arid winter-rainfall regions in the far west of South Africa and Namibia where it is found growing under rocks or bushes that provide it with shelter from the sun.
Gasteria pillansii thrives in bright light with some direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, fertile, well-drained soil coupled with monthly feeding during the growing season. Learn more on how to grow and care for Gasteria pillansii.
6. Gasteria bicolor
Gasteria bicolor also called Gasteria obliqua bear multiple stems that are covered with masses of fleshy mottled leaves and are occasionally keeled and have a sharp pointed at the tip.
Gasteria bicolor is native to a wide area of the Eastern Cape where it is found growing on rocky slopes and outcrops in the thicket vegetation of the region.
It is slow growing plant which prefers bright light, well-drained, rich, moderately moist soil and average to above average warmth. It cannot tolerate frost, therefore, protect it from cold drafts.
7. Gasteria carinata
Gasteria carinata commonly called Bredasdorp Gasteria or Keeled Gasteria bears dark-green, triangular leaves spotted with white tubercles arranged in transverse bands which have sharp points at the tips and channeled on their upper surface.
The flowers are white to light pink with central green stripes and appear on spreading and slightly curved stalks in winter and spring.
Gasteria carinata is native to Western Cape in South Africa where it occurs in dry river valleys, on shale banks and outcrops in the shade of xerophytic shrubs.
8. Gasteria maculata
Gasteria maculata bears thick, fleshy leaves which are rounded below, dark green in color with white specks, arranged in two ranks and are raised with rough edges.
The flowers in Gasteria maculata are pink and orange, bell-shaped and are borne on a 12 in. long stem.
Gasteria maculata is a slow-growing, low-maintenance plant which grows best in shade to bright indirect light away from direct sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, fertile, loose, well-drained soil.
9. Gasteria glauca
Gasteria glauca also called Kouga Gasteria bears thick, fleshy, smooth, shiny, bluish ("glaucous") leaves which are nearly cylindrical with a pointy tip.
The leaves start off in two opposite rows (distichous) but later become a dense rosette with the inner leaves growing erect while the outer ones are spreading.
Gasteria glauca is an easy to grow Gasteria which is native to the cliff faces overlooking the Kouga River of the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa.
10. Gasteria nitida
Gasteria nitida also called Thurst Gasteria is a stemless, succulent plant with fat, shiny, spotted, triangular leaves which eventually grow in a rosette.
Gasteria nitida is native to the Eastern Cape grasslands of South Africa. The species name, 'nitida' is Latin for 'shiny', in reference to the shiny leaf surface.
Unlike in other Gasterias, the flowers are a darker reddish pink, with yellow throats. The flowers appear in summer on a branched inflorescence.
11. Gasteria armstrongii
Gasteria armstrongii has rough, tuberculate, recurved, purely distichous leaves and a solitary unbranched inflorescence and is thought to be a subspecies of Gasteria nitida.
Gasteria armstrongii which remains in its juvenile phase is native to Eastern Cape Province, South Africa where it is found growing along the Gamtoos river, a flat to hilly terrain rich in pebbles, under full sun or partially covered by small shrubs.
Gasteria armstrongii is the most threatened of all the Gasteria species, as its habitat is rapidly being developed.
12. Gasteria verrucosa
Gasteria verrucosa also called Gasteria carinata var. verrucosa bears upright, dull green leaves patterned with raised white spots, arranged in two opposite vertical rows and is very variable in size and leaf shape.
Gasteria verrucosa is found growing on rocky outcrops and flat areas in limestone fynbos and outliers of subtropical thicket east of Bredasdorp in the Western Cape Province of South Africa.
The flowers are orange-pink, appear in early spring and are borne on long inflorescences upto 3 ft long.