Updated: May 31, 2022

The chocolate soldier plant, also known as the chocolate soldier succulent (Kalanchoe tomentosa), is a popular indoor plant, but it can also be grown outdoors in warmer climates. This plant is easy to care for and can add a unique touch to your garden. Here are some tips on how to successfully grow the chocolate soldier plant outdoors.

Choosing the Right Location

The chocolate soldier plant is native to Madagascar, so it prefers a warm and dry climate. It can tolerate direct sunlight, but it also grows well in partial shade. When choosing a location for your chocolate soldier plant, keep these factors in mind:

  • Sunlight: The plant needs at least six hours of sunlight per day, but too much direct sunlight can cause the leaves to burn.
  • Temperature: The ideal temperature range for this plant is between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Drainage: The soil should be well-draining to prevent root rot.

Planting Your Chocolate Soldier Plant

Once you have chosen the right location, it’s time to plant your chocolate soldier plant. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Choose a pot or container that has drainage holes at the bottom.
  2. Fill the pot with well-draining soil.
  3. Gently remove the plant from its current container and loosen any tangled roots.
  4. Place the plant in the new pot and cover the roots with soil.
  5. Water the plant thoroughly.

If you are planting multiple chocolate soldier plants, make sure to space them at least six inches apart.

Watering and Fertilizing

The chocolate soldier plant is drought-tolerant and doesn’t require frequent watering. Water the plant only when the soil feels dry to the touch. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other problems.

Fertilize your chocolate soldier plant once a month during its growing season (spring and summer). Use a balanced fertilizer that is diluted to half strength.

Pruning and Propagation

Pruning isn’t necessary for the chocolate soldier plant, but it can help keep the plant looking neat and tidy. You can remove any dead or yellowing leaves, as well as any leggy stems.

Propagation is easy with the chocolate soldier plant. You can propagate the plant by stem cuttings. Simply take a stem cutting that is at least two inches long, remove the bottom leaves, and place it in well-draining soil. Keep the soil moist until the cutting roots.

Common Problems and Solutions

Here are some common problems that you may encounter when growing your chocolate soldier plant outdoors:

  • Pests: The chocolate soldier plant is susceptible to mealybugs, spider mites, and scale insects. Treat any infestations with a mild insecticide.
  • Leaf drop: This can be caused by overwatering, underwatering, or temperature fluctuations. Adjust your watering schedule and make sure the plant is in a stable environment.
  • Yellowing leaves: This can be caused by too much direct sunlight or nutrient deficiencies. Move the plant to a shadier location or fertilize it with a balanced fertilizer.


Can I grow a chocolate soldier plant in a cold climate?

No, the chocolate soldier plant needs warm temperatures to thrive.

How often should I water my chocolate soldier plant?

Water the plant only when the soil feels dry to the touch.

Can I propagate my chocolate soldier plant from leaf cuttings?

No, stem cuttings are the best way to propagate this plant.

In conclusion, growing a chocolate soldier plant outdoors can be a rewarding experience. With proper care and attention, you can enjoy this unique succulent in your garden for years to come.

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