Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) Indoor Care and Propagation Guide

Paddle Plant, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora

Botanical name: Kalanchoe thyrsiflora
Family: Crassulaceae
Common nmaes: Paddle Plant, Desert Cabbage, FlapJack, White Lady


Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) also called Desert Cabbage, FlapJack or White Lady is a popular Kalanchoe foliage plant on account ot its beautiful foliage.

FlapJack Kalanchoe forms a basal rosette of large, rounded, succulent, stalkless leaves which are grayish-green with red margins, covered with a white powdery bloom. It can grow to a height of 1-2 ft.


The inflorescence in Desert Cabbage is terminal and erect, borne on a 3 ft tall stalk which dies back after flowering.

White Lady is densley clustered with greenish waxy flowers with yellow recurved lobes, narrowly urn-shaped.


Kalanchoe thyrsiflora (Paddle Plant) is native to Botswana, Lesotho, South Africa and Swaziland.


Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) like other Kalanchoe Plants contains Calcium glycosides which are toxic to animals as indicated by ASPCA. Keep the plant away from the reach of pets to avoid any mishaps.

Where to Buy

Kalanchoe Plants are available online at Etsy. Buy Kalanchoe Plants online from Etsy.

Paddle Plant, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora

Kalanchoe thyrsiflora Care Indoors

Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) prefers bright light to full sunlight, average warmth and moderately moist, rich, well-drained soil coupled with monthly feeding during the growing season.

Flapjack Plant does not require frequent repotting as it is a slow grower; only when it becomes pot-bound. Pruning is necessary to keep it neat and tidy. Keep reading for more on these growing conditions and how to obtain them.

Light Requirements

Paddle Plant grows best in bright light to full sunlight. Do not expose it to hot direct sunlight as it can scorch the leaves.

If you choose to grow this Flapjack Succulent outdoors, gradually acclimate it and place it in a shaded place to avoid scorching the leaves.

Rotate the pot regularly to ensure that the plant gets adequate light on all sides for uniform growth.

Kalanchoe thyrsiflora can be grown under a grow light where the natural light is not sufficient.


Water Paddle Plant deeply during the growing season and allow the top 2-3 in. of soil to dry out between waterings.

Significantly lessen watering in the cold season as growth is minimal at this time to maintain the soil barely moist but do not let the soil dry out completely.

Always use a pot that has a drainage hole to prevent the soil from getting soggy as it can result in root-rot.

Take care not to wet the leaves as it can lead to rotting or water from the bottom instead.

Use water that is at room temperature water Flapjack Plant to avoid shocking this tropical plant.

Temperature and Humidity

Average warmth between 16-260C is ideal for Paddle Plant. The sudden change in temperature between day and night is excellent for this succulent plant.

Paddle Plant has no need for high humidity. Average room humidity is adequate for this plant.

Potting Soil

The best soil for Paddle Plant should be rich in organic matter, loose and free-draining to avoid getting soggy soil. The soil should be loose enough to allow water to drain out fast enough. Cactus and Succulents soil available at Etsy is ideal for Flapjack Kalanchoe.


Feed Paddle Plant monthly during the growing period with a balanced, liquid fertilizer for lush growth. Do not feed in the cold season as growth is reduced at this time.


Repot Paddle Plant only when the plant becomes pot-bound. Use a shallow rather than a deep pot as it has shallow roots.

The pot should be only 1 size larger than the current one. Ascertain that the pot has a drainage hole to avoid getting soggy soil as it can lead to root-rot disease.

A clay pot for Flapjack Plant is preferable because it is porous and therefore allows the soil to dry out faster.


Pruning Paddle Plant is easy as it requires the removal of dead and diseased leaves to maintain the plant neat and tidy.


Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) can be propagated at the beginning of the growing season from leaf cuttings as they root easily.

How to propagate Paddle Plant from Leaf Cuttings

Take leaf cuttings together with about an inch of the leaf petiole from a healthy Paddle Plant.

Allow the leaf cuttings to dry (callus) for 1-3 days before planting to prevent rotting.

Insert the leaf petiole into moist, free-draining soil while ensuring that the midrib of the leaf also comes into contact with the soil.

Cover the set up with transparent polythene to raise humidity inorder to hasten rooting and establishment.

Position the set up in a warm, brightly-lit place away from direct sunlight. Water sparingly, only when the soil is dry.

Ensure the rooting container has adequate drainage to avoid getting the soil soggy as it can lead to rotting of the leaf cuttings.

Once the plantlets have grown at least one set of leaves, carefully seperate them and pot in individual pots.

Place the new Flapjack Plants in a warm, well-lit spot and begin routine care.

Paddle Plant, Kalanchoe thyrsiflora

Kalanchoe thyrsiflora Problems

Paddle Plant (Kalanchoe thyrsiflora) problems include dropping leaves, drooping leaves, leggy growth, rotting, shriveled leaves, pests and diseases among others. Continue reading for more on these problems, their remedies and solutions.


Paddle Plant is prone to Mealy Bugs and Scale Insects. Isolate the affected plant to reduce spread to other houseplants and treat it with appropriate products like Neem oil or Insecticidal soap.

Drooping leaves

Paddle Plant drooping leaves is due to underwatering. Immediately water the plant deeply and it should perk up.

Thereafter, water the Flapjack Kalanchoe thoroughly during the growing season while allowing the top 2-3 in. of soil to dry out between waterings.

During the cold season, water the plant very infrequently but never allow the soil to dry our completely.

Dropping leaves

Paddle Plant dropping leaves is due to incorrect water; either overwatering or underwatering.

Water the Flapjack Plant liberally during the growing season and allow the top 2-3 in. of soil to dry out between waterings.

Significantly decrease watering during the cold season but never allow the soil ball to dry out completely.

Avoid soggy soil for the Dessert Cabbage Plant by ensuring that the pot has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining.

Leggy growth

Paddle Plant leggy growth is caused by too little light. This is an attempt by the plant to reach for the light.

Move the Flapjack Kalanchoe to a brighter spot where it will receive bright light with some direct sunlight or use a grow light if the natural light is not enough.

Rotting base, yellowing and shriveled leaves

Rotting plant base followed by yellowing and shrivelled leaves in Paddle Plant is an indication of basal stem-rot disease which is brought about by overwet conditions.

Avoid getting the soil soggy by ensuring that the pot for the Flapjack Plant has a drainage hole and the soil is free-draining.

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