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Crassula rubricaulis (Red-stem Crassula)

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Scientific Name

Crassula rubricaulis Eckl. & Zeyh.

Common Names

Red-stem Crassula

Synonyms

Crassula rubricaulis var. muirii

Scientific Classification

Family: Crassulaceae
Subfamily: Crassuloideae
Genus: Crassula

Description

Crassula rubricaulis is a small succulent shrub, up to 20 inches (50 cm) tall, with reddish branches and attractive red-edged leaves. The older branches become woody and grey-brown. They root at the nodes where they touch the ground. Leaves are long, flattened, green with or without red margins, becoming deep red, up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) long, and up to 0.5 inches (1.3 cm) wide. In summer, it produces white, star-shaped flowers in large rounded clusters on red-tinged flowering stems.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Crassulas are easy to grow, but they are susceptible to mealybugs 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 fascicularis is native to South Africa (Western and Eastern Cape).

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