Crassula ovata 'Gollum'
ET's Fingers, Finger Jade, Gollum Jade, Hobbit's Pipe Jade, Succulent Spoon Jade, Trumpet Jade
Crassula portulacea 'Gollum', Crassula 'Gollum'
Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is an interesting succulent shrub or small tree with branches that bear odd tubular green leaves with flared but depressed in the center, often brilliant red tips. It is smaller than the normal species, usually growing about 12 inches (30 cm) tall. The branches are fleshy grey-green, becoming woody as they mature with scars of the fallen leaves. The leaves are up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) long and 0.7 inches (1.8 cm) broad. The color of the leaves varies depending on the season and growing conditions.
This cultivar is very similar to Crassula ovata 'Hobbit', but while the leaves of 'Hobbit' are rolled back at all edges, forming a slightly flattened cylinder with a lens-shaped dimple just below most leaf tips, the leaves of 'Gollum' have highly modified tips with a deep central depression.
The flowers are white or pink, star-shaped, up to 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) across, and appear in compact terminal clusters from mid-winter to early spring.
Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is one of the first two cultivars comprising the Tolkien Group, named after the characters in Tolkien's legendarium. The other one is Crassula ovata 'Hobbit'. They are monstrous mutations of Crassula ovata.
How to Grow and Care for Crassula ovata 'Gollum'
Light: This succulent thrives in full sun and requires about 4 to 6 hours of daily sun exposure. It will survive in partial to medium shade but needs direct sunlight for flowering. If kept indoors, find a bright spot in your home.
Soil: Crassula ovata 'Gollum' requires well-draining soil. Use commercial potting soil mixes designated for succulents, or mix your own.
Hardiness: This plant tolerates a wide range of temperatures and may even tolerate light frost. However, prolonged cold is usually fatal. Crassula ovata 'Gollum' can withstand temperatures as low as 30 °F (-1.1 °C). USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 10a to 11b, 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C).
Watering: One of the most important things when caring for Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is ensuring it is properly watered. Although it is a succulent plant, it does need water. During the growing season, it does best when the soil is allowed to dry out between deep waterings. In summer, it requires little water and even less in winter when it is semi-dormant.
Fertilizing: Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is a slow-growing plant and does not need much feeding. However, it will benefit from a small amount of organic fertilizer in mid-spring when it starts actively growing.
Repotting: This succulent does not mind being root-bound in a small pot, although it is best to repot it every 2 to 3 years or when the plant becomes top-heavy. The best time to repot is in spring when the new growth starts.
Propagation: Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is started by stem cuttings or leaves. Propagation from stem cuttings is the fastest way to get a decent-sized plant. Always take cuttings when the plant is actively growing.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for a Jade Plant.
Toxicity of Crassula ovata 'Gollum'
Crassula ovata 'Gollum' is toxic to cats, dogs, and horses and mildly toxic to humans through ingestion or skin contact.
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