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Curio talinoides (Blue Fingers)

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Scientific Name

Curio talinoides (DC.) P. V. Heath

Common Names

Blue Senecio, Blue Fingers, Blue Ice Plant, Blue Chalk Sticks

Synonyms

Senecio talinoides, Kleinia talinoides

Scientific Classification

Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Asteroideae
Tribe: Senecioneae
Subtribe: Senecioninae
Genus: Curio

Description

Curio talinoides is an evergreen perennial semi-trailing succulent shrub up to 16 inches (40 cm) tall and up to 24 inches (60 cm) wide. Stem is sparingly branched, erect, becoming procumbent and often rooting at the nodes, fleshy and brittle, up to 0.4 inch (1 cm) in diameter. The leaves are up to 6 inches (15 cm) long, up to 0.4 inches (1 cm) in diameter, slightly flattened above, erect or arching, glaucous-grey with darker stripes. The small flowers are white followed by long thin wind-dispersed seeds.

Photo via imgbucket.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Established plants are extremely drought tolerant. They do need some water, during the summer, but do not leave the soil wet for prolonged periods. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings in the winter, when they are somewhat dormant. Since they are growing in sandy soil, nutrients will need to be replenished. Fertilize annually, but lightly. Too much fertilizer will cause a lot of leggy growth.

Taller varieties can get floppy. You can prune them back to where the stem is firm, in very early spring. You can even root the cuttings. Plants can be divided or repotted in early spring. If you are growing them in containers, they enjoy spending the summer outdoors. Wait until there is no danger of frost and move them back indoors in the fall.

Senecio can be grown from either seed or cuttings. Seeds prefer warm temperatures (55˚F / 13˚C). And constant moisture to germinate. Cuttings are easier and faster. Cut during the growing season, early spring to fall. Root in sandy soil, in containers… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Senecio

Origin

Native to South Africa.

Subspecies, Varieties, Forms, Cultivars and Hybrids

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