Crassula cultrata L.
Bush Plakkie, Sharp-leaved Crassula
Crassula cultrata var. typica, Globulea cultrata
Crassula cultrata is a succulent shrub with woody, usually erect branches and fleshy leaves arranged in opposite pairs. It can grow up to 32 inches (80 cm) tall. The branches can reach up to 0.4 inches (1 cm) in diameter. The leaves are green, often yellowish green with reddish margins or rarely becoming reddish brown. They are smooth, rarely velvety, inversely lance-shaped to knife-shaped, measuring up to 4 inches (10 cm) long and 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) wide, usually smaller.
The inflorescence is an elongated thyrse made up of one terminal and several smaller heads on side branches of many loosely clustered flowers atop peduncles that can reach a length of 1 foot (30 cm). The small flowers are tubular to almost cylindrical, measure up to 0.3 inches (0.8 cm) long, have green sepals and cream-colored petals, and appear in summer.
Crassula cultrata is native to South Africa. It grows in kloofs or river valleys, often associated with rock outcrops or scrub vegetation from Mossel Bay and Little Karoo in the Western Cape to KwaZulu-Natal.
USDA hardiness zone 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Crassulas are easy to grow but susceptible to mealy bugs and fungal diseases. Overwatering is sure to be fatal, as with all succulents, so err on the side of too dry rather than too wet. Never let your Crassula sit in water. If you water from beneath by letting the plant sit in a saucer of water, ensure to pour off any excess water after a few minutes.
Crassulas are generally started by division, offsets, or leaf cuttings. Plants can be easily propagated from a single leaf: sprout leaves by placing them into a succulent or cacti mix, then covering the dish until they sprout.
Repot as needed, preferably during the warm season. To repot a succulent, ensure the soil is dry before repotting, then gently remove the pot. Knock away the old soil from the roots, removing any rotted or dead roots. Treat any cuts with a fungicide. Place the plant in its new pot and backfill it with potting soil, spreading the roots as you repot. Leave the plant dry for a week or so, then begin to water lightly to reduce the risk of root rot.
See more at How to Grow and Care for Crassula.
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