Echeveria setosa

Mexican Firecracker

Echeveria setosa

Kirsten Hunt

Mexican Firecracker at the University of St. Thomas
Photo by Kirsten Hunt

General: The Echeveria setosa is a perennial evergreen succulent plant from the Crassulaceae family and is commonly called the Mexican firecracker plant. The plant is uniquely “fuzzy” and near-stemless. It is found native in Mexico.

Leaves: The leaves of the Echeveria setosa are densely-packed and arranged in a rosette pattern (up to 3-6″ in diameter). The leaves are green and spoon-shaped (up to 2″ long and 0.75″ wide). Each leaf is covered in many small, white hairs. In cold temperatures, the leaf tips may become red in color.

Closeup of the Mexican Firecracker leaves Photo by Kirsten Hunt

Leaves of the Mexican Firecracker
Photo by Kirsten Hunt

Flowers: The Echeveria setosa flowers in late spring to summer and produces pentagonal, bright red and yellow flowers. The flowers are found on the end of stalks (up to 12″ tall) that are erected from the rosette of the plant.

Flowers of the Mexican firecracker plant

Flowers of the Mexican Firecracker

Adaptations: The Echeveria setosa can adapt to many conditions – sun or shade, moist soil or dry soil, but it is ideal to give the plant and adequate supply of water and bright sunlight. The plant can withstand long periods of drought without requiring watering.

Uses: The Echeveria setosa  is commonly used as a houseplant and as decorative foliage. It is drought-resistant, so it is easy to maintain on your own. When the plant flowers, the flowers attract bees and other insects.

Range: Native to the Puebla region in Mexico, the Echeveria setosa is one of the few succulents part of the Echeveria genus that can bloom in the United States.


Interesting facts: The species name “setosa” comes from the Latin word, “seta”,  meaning silk because of the little silk-like hairs on the leaves. The Echeveria setosa is commonly called the Mexican firecracker because it originates from Mexico and the flowers, when in bloom, look like fireworks.


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