- Stonecrop Plant – Planting Stonecrop In Your Garden
- Stonecrop Succulents
- Growing Stonecrops
- Propagating Stonecrop Plant
- Varieties of Stonecrop
- Learn How to Propagate Sedum. Sedum Propagation is done by two methods: Either by cuttings or by seeds.
- Sedum Propagation by Cuttings
- Sedum Propagation from Seeds
Stonecrop Plant – Planting Stonecrop In Your Garden
The stonecrop is a succulent sedum plant (Sedum spp.), ideal for arid areas of the garden. Growing stonecrops is one of the easier plant projects with their easy maintenance and low culture requirements. They are in the genus Crassula, which embraces many of our favorite houseplant succulents, like Jade plants, as well as old garden favorites such as Echeveria. The stonecrop perennial plant will thrive in hot sunny locations and reward you with easy color and form.
The family of stonecrop succulents is large and encompasses low growing, trailing plants and tall spiked-flowering plants that may get up to a foot in height. All stonecrop plants have a rosette form and most produce a flower held above the base foliage. The leaves are thick and semi-glossy.
Most stonecrop plants cultivated in gardens have their origins in Europe and Asia, finding their way to North America and other places across the globe through exploration, trade, etc. – many of which having eventually become naturalized, growing freely in nature (as with the wild form, Sedum ternatum). There are also vast numbers of hybrid types available too.
The flowers of stonecrop perennial are rich with
sweet nectar and attract bees, moths and butterflies. The colors range but are usually in the pastel family of hues. Flowers can remain on the plants well into early winter, adding dimension and interest to the succulents even as they dry.
The cultivation of stonecrops is an excellent beginning gardener project. They can grow indoors in sunny warm locations or outdoors. The stonecrop plant is perfect for container gardening, in rockeries, along paths or as part of perennial borders. Stonecrop succulents rarely have any pest problems and are unbothered by disease.
Stonecrop doesn’t have a deep root system and can be buried shallowly in soil. They cannot tolerate competition from weeds and other plants, but a mulch of small stones helps minimize such pests.
The plants need well-drained soil that is rich in organic amendment. Young plants should be watered every few days while establishing but irrigation can diminish thereafter and no supplemental water is needed in fall and winter. If planting in containers, use pots that are unglazed clay to promote evaporation of excess water. Over watering is the most common cause of problems in stonecrop.
The plants need a low nitrogen fertilizer applied a few times in the growing season.
Propagating Stonecrop Plant
Sedums are one of the easiest plants to reproduce and most members of the stonecrop family can be propagated similarly. All you need is a leaf or bit of stem. Planting stonecrop stem shallowly in a very gritty medium or lay a leaf on the surface of sandy soil will result in a new succulent in no time. The plant material will root in just a couple of weeks, producing a whole new stonecrop.
Varieties of Stonecrop
Some of the most common gift and indoor plants are in the stonecrop family. Jade plant has already been mentioned, but Kalanchoe, silver beads, string of pearls and other colorfully named succulents are also in the family. The sedums are one of the largest groups and include Pink Chablis, Carmen, Purple Emperor and the towering Autumn Joy. Autumn Joy has large flowers on a tall stem that make excellent additions to dried floral arrangements.
Sedum adolphi, commonly known as Golden Sedum, is an incredibly versatile rangy color accent in succulent landscapes, borders and along pathways or for spilling forth out of planters. Star-shaped, white flowers add winsome contrast to the greenish-yellow leaf color, which sparkles golden orange in strong light. It is a bushy plant in bright light. In shade, stems tend to trail. White flowers are borne on leafy stalks at the stem tips.
This lovely high colored tender succulent is a fine groundcover in frost free areas. Goled Sedum is most often grown as a houseplant or an attractive outdoor container plant where it can be protected during the winter. It is hardy from USDA hardiness zones 9 through 11.
The late Henk ‘t Hart and Bert Bleij wrote the Sedum section in the lexicon “Illustrated Handbook of Succulent Plants: Crassulaceae” and noted Sedum nussbaumerianum to be very similar if not identical to S. adolphi. Robert Clausen in “Sedum of North America North of the Mexican Plateau” treated them as separate species in his book based on small differences in the inflorescences (S. nussbaumerianum has flowers all in the same plane, while S. adolphi has petals at different levels in cymes). However the facts indicate that S. nussbaurianum should be regarded as a synonym of S. adolphi. The two plants have the same chromosome count, they came from plants grown from the same source (seeds gathered by Carl Purpus in 1907) and both have corymbiform inflorescences. With priority of 12 years, Sedum adolphi is the valid name.
Photo via wikimedia.org
Growing Conditions and General Care
Choose a location with full sun to filtered shade. Golden Sedums is an ideal plant for rock gardens because it spreads quickly with a trailing, low form. At maturity, it stand up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall and spread up to 2 feet (60 cm). Golden Sedum can also be used in mixed container gardens or even on walls or terraces.
This succulent tolerates most soils but thrive in light, slightly sandy, well-draining soils. In soggy, water-logged soils, the roots rot and the plants suffer disease and pest problems. Plant Golden Sedum 2 feet (60 cm) apart. Combine this plant with other succulents or low-growing, drought-tolerant groundcovers.
Golden Sedum is drought tolerant once it establish a deep root system. The best way to water this plant is to use “soak and dry” method. Get the soil completely wet and then wait until the soil is dry before watering again. Fertilize annually with a balanced fertilizer. Apply the fertilizer to the soil in spring as new growth appears, according to package directions.
Trim back with a string trimmer to remove flowers if the plant starts to look untidy. Divide Golden Sedum every 4 years to encourage new growth.
There are 3 ways to effectively propagate Golden Sedum: from seed, leaf cuttings and stem cuttings.
- Back to genus Sedum
- Succulentopedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
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Sedums are one of those indispensable succulents that can find a place in nearly every succulent planter. Here are a few points about sedums that make them winners in any garden. They are very cold hardy. They are drought tolerant. They are rarely bothered by pests. They form an attractive ground cover. They can be used as trailing plants that hang down the sides of containers. There are hundreds of varieties. They are easy to grow.
If you have a sedum plant and want to use it in additional planters or around the yard, one option that you have is to propagate the sedum by cuttings.
- Snip off a 2-5″ piece of the sedum plant
- Plant the cutting into soil that has good drainage
- Keep the newly planted cutting moist (water it like you would water petunias or another annual)
- After a couple weeks it’s roots will take hold and begin to develop
When planting sedum cuttings people always ask us at Young’s, “How deep should the cuttings be planted?” Here’s a photo documentation of cuttings planted shallow vs. deep.
We took 2 sedum cuttings that were both about 5″ long.
There were planted in the same small container. One was planted an inch deep and the other was planted 3 inches deep.
Would the cutting that was planted deeper develop a stronger root system? Exactly 3 weeks after planting we removed the cuttings from the soil to see how their root systems were growing.
The cutting that was planted shallow actually had a strong and healthy root system. It looked much better than just 3 weeks of growth.
The cutting that was planted deeper had roots along the full length of the stem, but they actually don’t look quite as strong as the other cuttings root system.
Conclusion: It doesn’t really matter how deep you plant sedum cuttings. They root out readily planted to any depth. We recommend planting them about an inch deep. As sedums grow and mature their roots do not end up going extremely deep. Many succulents, like aeonium, have shallow roots so they can capture the lightest amount of moisture on the soil.
As a sedum plant grows it creeps along the ground and sends out roots from the middle of the stem. These roots anchor the plant and help it get the water and nutrients it needs as it spreads. Sedums make colorful and unique ground covers, perfect for any yard or planter.
Learn How to Propagate Sedum. Sedum Propagation is done by two methods: Either by cuttings or by seeds.
While choosing one of the methods you should remember that growing sedum by seed has a disadvantage of not getting a true plant. It means the plant that germinates from seed will not be the same as mother plant. So, sedum propagation is from cuttings is better to multiply to your sedum plants.
Sedum Propagation by Cuttings
The best time to propagate sedum by cuttings is typically between May and June.
Cuttings are obtained from the tips of the stems to a length of 8-10 cm by using a nice sharp knife that is disinfected by alcohol and removing the lower leaves about 2 – 3 cm at the bottom.
Allow to dry the succulent’s cuttings for 7 – 10 days and then plant them in a growing medium made from sand and peat.
Keep the soil wet and place the cuttings where temperature remains between the range of 50 – 60 ° F.
Once the buds appear your sedum plant is propagated.
Sedum Propagation from Seeds
If you want to grow sedum from seeds, the best time to sow them is spring or summer.
Fill a pot or seed tray with seed starting mix. Firm the mix and water until it starts to drain out from bottom. Spread seeds over the soil mix, 1 inch apart to each other and cover them with a thin layer of soil mix again.
Cover the pot or tray with transparent plastic wrap to ensure consistent humidity, good temperature and to avoid rapid dryness of the growing medium. The plastic wrap must be removed every day for air circulation.
Place the tray in shade at a temperature of around 60-70 ° F and keep it slightly moist (use a sprayer for moistening the soil) until the time of germination.
The seeds will germinate in 2 – 4 weeks. Once they sprout remove the plastic wrap and place seedlings on a windowsill that receives light morning sun and slowly increase the amount of sunlight as seedlings grow.
When seedling have grown big enough, transplant them into individual pots.