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CRASSULA perfoliata

Image of Crassula perfoliata

John Rickard

Family

Crassulaceae

Botanical Name

CRASSULA perfoliata

Plant Common Name

Crassula

General Description

This tender succulent subshrub is beloved for its striking foliage and form. It is a robust native of eastern South Africa, where summers are moist and winters dry. Fleshy, upright, knee-high to waist-high stems are furnished with long, lance-shaped, silver-gray leaves that resemble oversized snow pea pods. The leaves stand at right angles to the stem, clasping it at their bases. Forms of the species known variously as falcata or minor have leaves that are twisted propeller-fashion. One of the showiest crassulas in bloom, this species bears large flat or slightly domed clusters of small red, orange, or white flowers that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. They appear at the stem tips in summer.

This unique little succulent is a first class container plant for window, porch or patio, requiring very porous fast draining soil. In mild climates such as coastal California it is planted outdoors in rock gardens and on slopes. In hot climates shade it from midday sun. Remove spent flower stalks, and prune back stems if they become lanky.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    11 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H1, H2, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Cactus or Succulent

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Bloom Time

    Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer, Early Fall

  • Native To

    South Africa

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Xeric/Desert, Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    White, Red, Orange

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Gray

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Gray

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    Gray

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    Gray

  • Bark Color

    Tan, Gray

  • Fragrant Flowers

    Yes

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Foliage Texture

    Medium

  • Foliage Sheen

    Matte

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Houseplant, Mixed Border, Rock Garden / Wall

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Hummingbirds, Butterflies

  • Self-Sowing

    No