Crassula perfoliata var. minor (Haw.) G.D.Rowley
Airplane Plant, Propeller Plant, Red Crassula, Scarlet Paintbrush, Sickle-leaf Red Crassula
Crassula decussata, Crassula falcata, Crassula falx, Crassula perfoliata var. falcata, Crassula retroflexa, Crassula swellingrebliana, Larochea falcata, Larochea falcata var. minor, Rochea falcata, Rochea falcata var. minor
The native range of this variety is from the Groot Winterhoek mountains in Western Cape and Port Elizabeth (now Gqeberha) to Umtata (now Mthatha) in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. It occurs on north-, east- and west-facing cliffs along dry river valleys.
Crassula perfoliata var. minor, also known as Crassula falcata, is an interesting succulent with sickle-shaped leaves arranged in overlapping pairs along usually unbranched stems. It grows up to 2 feet (60 cm) tall, producing new shoots at the base. Leaves are green to grey-green, sometimes with red or purple spots. They are up to 4 inches (10 cm) long and up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) wide. This plant is attractive when not blooming, but it is a show-stopper when the usually bright red, sometimes pink, or rarely white flowers emerge. The flowers appear in dense, very showy clusters that rise above the foliage in summer. They open slowly and last for nearly a month.
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 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, 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.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Crassula.
Forms and Hybrids
- Crassula perfoliata var. minor 'Variegata'
- Crassula 'Bride's Bouquet'
- Crassula 'Buddha's Temple'
- Crassula 'Coralita'
- Crassula 'Garnet Lotus'
- Crassula 'Ivory Tower'
- Crassula 'Jade Necklace'
- Crassula 'Jade Tower'
- Crassula 'Justus Corderoy'
- Crassula 'Moonglow'
- Crassula 'Morgan's Beauty'
- Crassula 'Silver Springtime'
- Crassula 'Springtime'
- Back to genus Crassula
- Succupedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
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