Out in the wild, adenium in deserts can get pretty big. Often to the size of a small washing machine. Cultivated desert roses are much more compact–often to the size of a 10-year-old kid. Dwarf or mini desert roses are tiny, often as small as a little succulent plant.

If you're curious, let's explore the different adenium sizes together.

The Big Adenium Plants

Have a look at this big guy:

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Wild Adenium in the desert

This plant is what explorers like Mark Dimmitt found when they first had their adventure trips to wild African deserts.

Because of their size and weight, these adenium would not be ideal for household plantings. Especially for folks with bad back to move them around their yard or plant them in pots.

To bring this beauty home, many growers have cultivated & cross-bred varieties to create more compact, manageable adenium that still produce magnificent flowers.


These smaller plants are great for adenium lovers to find a space in their gardens & suitable containers. Speaking of which, let's check out these cuties next:

The Small Adenium Plants

Here's a little cutie:

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Little adenium cutie | Source

These are the small guys in the adenium family. They go by the name Dorset Horn, Tiny Ding Dong, Adenium Broccoli, Adenium Micro-broccoli, and more.

These little guys usually grow slower than the big ones. However, they don't get way too big. They do bloom & their flowers are also very beautiful.

Often, the dwarf desert roses don't get bigger than the size of a football or basketball. They're suitable for small spaces like on the windowsill or on the balcony.

Desert Rose Size From Seeds to Plants

Depending on how you feed the plants, your babies may grow bigger or smaller than other babies. If you're growing them in pots, you may find this size table helpful:

Baby's growth Pot size (inches)
Seeds 2-3
3-6 months 6-8
6-12 months 8-14+

A tip when choosing the pot size is to not choose pots that are too big for them or too small for them. Too big, the seedlings may have issue with the water unconsumed in the soil, which could lead to rotting. Too small, the plant cannot grow to its full size easily. So just fit or about 5-10% bigger would be comfortable for them.

These are the small seedlings about several weeks old:

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Cute little adenium seedlings

We utilized a cake box to grow these Tiny Ding Dongs. They don't need a lot of space. And they're so cute, right! These guys are a little over 1 month old here:

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When we shared them on Reddit, a guy said that they needed a new bigger house. So that's what we did.

Check out this baby born in 2011:

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Beautiful desert rose in pot

This is her prime time. We love her so much. You see, the container doesn't have to be big. This one is around 10 inches or so. And about 15 inches deep. She also has an older brother. We'll share some pics with you guys soon.

So the trick is when your babies are growing bigger, select the pot that's about twice the size of their root ball. This gives them plenty of room to expand.

And with that in mind, we can:

Grow Big & Happy Baby Adenium

Hope this brief post answers your question. If you're wondering if an adenium is good for a small yard, the answer is totally yes. It's really the goal of some growers to develop even more compact species with striking flower colors.

Having a desert rose will beautify your garden while not taking away your valuable time. Because it's easy to take care of once you know the ins & outs.

Adenium itself is a fighter for its survival. You will see things like magical recovery if you stick to this plant long enough. It's immensely rewarding. And enjoy!

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