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Crassula expansa subsp. fragilis

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Scientific Name

Crassula expansa subsp. fragilis (Bak.) Toelken

Synonyms

Crassula fragilis (basionym), Crassula browniana, Crassula thorncroftii, Crassula woodii, Crassula zimmermannii

Scientific Classification

Family: Crassulaceae
Subfamily: Crassuloideae
Genus: Crassula

Description

Crassula expansa subsp. fragilis is an evergreen, low-growing, perennial plant with masses of tiny succulent leaves. It grows up to 10 inches (25 cm) tall, with a spread of up to 20 inches (50 cm). The leaves are flattened succulent discs, sometimes slightly elliptic or obovate. While the leaves are fresh to pale green, the stems are pinkish to maroon. Fine whitish hairs may be scattered along the leaf and stem surfaces. The flowers are tiny, white, 5-pointed and star-shaped, produced on the tangled cushion of slender stems and tiny leaves. They may be seen from late spring to fall.

Photo via flickriver.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 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 they are susceptible to mealy bugs and fungal diseases. As with all succulents, overwatering is sure to be fatal, so err on the side of too dry rather than too wet. Never let your plant sit in water. If you water from beneath by letting the plant sit in a saucer of water, make sure to pour off any excess water after a few minutes.

These succulents are generally started by division, offsets or leaf cuttings. Crassulas can be easily propagated from a single leaf. Sprout leaves by placing them into a potting mix for succulents, then covering the dish until they sprout.

Repot as needed, preferably during the warm season. To repot your Crassula, make sure the soil is dry before repotting, then gently remove the pot. Knock away the old soil from the roots, making sure to remove any rotted or dead roots in the process. Treat any cuts with a fungicide. Place the plant in its new pot and backfill with potting soil, spreading the roots out as you repot. Leave the plant dry for a week or so, then begin to water lightly to reduce the risk of root rot.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Crassula.

Origin

Crassula expansa subsp. fragilis is found in northern and eastern Transvaal, Swaziland, northern Natal and north-eastern Cape Province but also in tropical Africa as far north as Tanzania as well as in Madagascar.

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