Aichryson laxum (Haw.) Bramwell
Tree of Love
Aeonium laxum, Aichryson dichotomum, Sedum dichotomum, Sempervivum dichotomum, Sempervivum laxum
Aichryson laxum is a biennial succulent with stems covered with short hairs and hairy, green, or reddish (in strong light) leaves. It grows up to 20 inches (50 cm) tall. Leaves are up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long and arranged in rosettes at the tip of stems. The inflorescence is a branched cluster of yellow, star-like flowers. Plants die after flowering unless the inflorescence is removed as the flowers die.
USDA hardiness zones 9b to 12b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 60 °F (15.6 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Aichrysons grow as understory plants in the endemic laurel and pine forests of the Canary Islands and prefer to grow in slightly shaded moist soil with plenty of humus. They tolerate a cool, frost-free winter kept fairly dry. Some species are annuals or biennials, but the shrubby perennials also need to be re-started from cuttings regularly to be at their best. Many species produce volunteer seedlings around themselves after flowering.
These succulents are very tolerant of mixed conditions and will tolerate considerable shade as well as full sun. Given the right conditions, these plants will provide an incredible show of yellow flowers. Grow these plants hard with very little fertilizer because they can flower themselves to death. Aichrysons have a very structural trunk and make excellent bonsai subjects.
In winter, they require a rather sunny spot inside at moderate, cool temperatures. If they become too large, plants can be cut back. Cuttings will easily root within a few days. These ornamental dwarf plants are excellent pot plants and will thrive in any partially shaded spot at cool temperatures, e.g., on a window sill.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Aichryson.
Aichryson laxum is native to Canary Islands (Tenerife, Gran Canaria, La Palma, Hierro, Gomera).
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