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SENECIO ficoides

Image of Senecio ficoides

Altman Plants

Family

Asteraceae

Botanical Name

SENECIO ficoides

Plant Common Name

Blue Chalksticks

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

When coastal gardeners need fine textures and blue color in their gardens, no other plant beats blue sticks for looks and ease of cultivation. This plant is native to the Cape region of South Africa where the dry season is long and hot but tempered by the marine influence. This is why blue sticks does not perform well in very dry inland regions. This plant is a short creeper that sends out traveling stems topped with upstanding pencil thin leaves bearing pointed tips. They root as they travel, creating sizable masses of color.

Blue sticks blooms in spring with small cream colored flower heads produced at the branch tips. They are not very showy and may be cut off to preserve the beauty of the foliage. This is a must have plant for low, wide succulent color bowls to bounce of hot pink and red rosettes. It also creeps down rock gardens where the climate and exposure is just right. Grow in a solarium in the winter for beautiful living color. Like all succulents, this one demands very well drained porous soils with plenty of sharp sand. Water scantly in winter but often in the summer for fast growth.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    10 - 1

  • Plant Type

    Cactus or Succulent

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun, Partial Shade

  • Height

    6"-12" / 15.2cm - 30.5cm

  • Width

    12"-15" / 30.5cm - 38.1cm

  • Native To

    Southern Africa

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic, Neutral, Alkaline

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Xeric/Desert, Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Mat-forming

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    Yes

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Container, Groundcover, Rock Garden / Wall, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No