Haworthiopsis limifolia ‘Fairy Washboard’ ? (Syn. Haworthia limifolia)-File Leafed Haworthia, Fairies Washboard

Haworthiopsis limifolia (Syn. Haworthia limifolia) after I brought it home on 5-9-19, #570-3.

File Leafed Haworthia, Fairies Washboard

Haworthiopsis limifolia

(possibly the cultivar ‘Fairy Washboard’)

ha-WORTH-ee-OP-sis  lim-ih-FOH-lee-ih


Haworthia limifolia

ha-WORTH-ee-a  lim-ih-FOH-lee-ih

Haworthiopsis limifolia (Marloth) G.D.Rowley is currently the correct and accepted scientific name for this species. It was named and described as such by Gordon Douglas Rowley in Alsterworthia International, Special Issue 10:4 in 2013. It was first named and described as Haworthia limifolia by Hermann Wilhelm Rudolf Marloth in Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa in 1910. Plants of the World Online by Kew lists five accepted infraspecific names of Haworthiopsis limifolia.

The genus, Haworthiopsis G.D.Rowley, was also named and described by Gordon Douglas Rowley in the same publication as the species. Plants of the World Online currently lists 18 accepted species in the Haworthiopsis genus (as of when I am writing this page on May 9, 2019).

Although the accepted species name is currently Haworthiopsis limifolia, many websites still use the name Haworthia limifolia. Before, the two-lipped flowers were a distinguishing feature of the Haworthia genus. After extensive study, more detailed features of the flowers clearly identified three separate genera (Haworthia, Haworthiopsis, and Tulista). This certainly doesn’t mean the species won’t wind up back in the Haworthia genus at some point. You just never know… You can use whichever name you choose because both scientific names were validly published. It is just that Plants of the World Online by Kew (Royal Botanic Gardens) and whoever is in charge of plant names, says Haworthiopsis limifolia is now the accepted name. 


Haworthiopsis limifolia on 5-9-19, #570-4.

I brought my Haworthiopsis limifolia home from Wildwood Greenhouse on May 9, 2019. I bought the plant unlabeled so I posted a photo on the facebook group Succulent Infatuation. It is so much easier than trying to figure out the name on my own. Within no time, a member replied with an ID. She said it was Haworthia limifolia aka. ‘Fairy Washboard’.

I did research and found the genus name had changed several years ago. As far as it being the cultivar “Fairy Washboard’… That is debatable since the plant is unlabeled. One of the common names for Haworthiopsis limifolia is Fairies Washboard because of the leaves. Cultivar or not, the species looks like this plant. Just because a company sells a plant with a cultivar name, unless it is registered or patented, is probably not a “legit” cultivar. It is just a name given by the business.


Haworthiopsis limifolia on 5-9-19, #570-5.

The plant is approximately 2 3/8” tall x 3” wide and is in a 3 7/8” tall x 4 1/2” diameter pot. The pot is fairly large for this size of plant, much larger than if bought from a garden center chain. I am not sure how Mr. Yoder buys his succulents, but I am sure this plant was put in this pot at their greenhouse. This plant may grow fairly quickly so this size of pot may be acceptable. We shall see. Wildwood Greenhouse has some of the best looking plants of the four local greenhouses.

Family: Asphodelaceae
Origin: Species: South Africa
Zones: USDA Zones 9b-11 (25-40° F)
Size: Up to 12” tall x 3-5” wide. 12” tall? Hmmm…
Light: Light shade to shade.
Soil: Very well-draining mix. Potting soil amended with pumice or grit and perlite.
Water: Regular watering during the summer as with most plants and when the soil is dry during the winter. This is a little different than most succulents.

I am just starting with this plant so I don’t have any experience to share. 

I have not grown any Haworthia since 2009 and they did not survive (overwatered because I was a newbie at the time). According to Llifle (see link below) I found the following information to be somewhat different than most succulents I have grown:

WATER: Unlike most succulents, Llifle says this plant prefers its soil to be kept moist (but not wet) during the hotter months of the summer. During the winter, the soil should dry out completely between watering. No water should ever be allowed to stand around the roots. If using a saucer, make sure to empty it.

LIGHT: Supposedly this plant also prefers light shade to shade. In brighter light, the leaves take on a reddish tint.

ROT: Llifle says, “Rot is only a minor problem if the plants are watered and “aired” correctly. Care must be given in watering, keeping them warm and wet while growing, and cooler and dry when dormant.”

As with most succulents, they need a very fast draining, porous potting mixture. I used 2 parts Miracle Grow Potting Soil with 1 part chicken grit and 1 part perlite for many years. Many cactus and succulent enthusiasts use pumice so I am giving that a try. The company I bought it from recommends a 50/50 mix of potting soil and pumice. You just have to experiment somewhat. All potting soil is not created equal and succulent enthusiasts don’t like Miracle grow either. 

I will continue adding more photos and information as time goes by.

I hope you enjoyed this page and maybe found it useful. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions, I would like to hear from you. Please click on “like” if you can. It helps us bloggers stay motivated. 🙂 You can check out the links below for further reading. The links take you directly to the genus and species of this plant.