Stonecrop Plant - Planting Stonecrop In Your Garden

Demanding very little from a gardener, stonecrop plants add lovely and fascinating color and variety to any garden or container.

Stonecrop Plant
stonecrop plant
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Growing Stonecrop Perennials

The stonecrop is a succulent sedum plant (Sedum spp.) that is ideal for arid areas of the garden. Growing stonecrops is one of the easier plant projects because of 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.

Stonecrop Succulents

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 (31 cm) 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 have eventually become naturalized, growing freely in nature (as with the wild form, Sedum ternatum). There are also vast numbers of hybrid types available.

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. Flowers can remain on the plants well into early winter, adding dimension and interest to the succulents even as they dry.

Growing Stonecrops

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. It cannot tolerate competition from weeds and other plants, but a mulch of small stones helps minimize such pests.

Stonecrop plants need well-drained soil that is rich in organic amendments. 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 planted in containers, use pots that are unglazed clay to promote evaporation of excess water. Overwatering 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 laying 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.

Bonnie L. Grant

Bonnie Grant is a professional landscaper with a Certification in Urban Gardening. She has been gardening and writing for 15 years. A former professional chef, she has a passion for edible landscaping.