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Orostachys iwarenge (Chinese Dunce Cap)


Scientific Name

Orostachys iwarenge (Makino) Hara

Common Names

Chinese Dunce Cap, Dunce's Cap


Cotyledon iwarenge, Orostachys malacophylla var. iwarenge, Sedum iwarenge

Scientific Classification

Family: Crassulaceae
Subfamily: Sedoideae
Tribe: Sedeae
Subtribe: Umbilicinae
Genus: Orostachys


Orostachys iwarenge is an attractive ground cover with cone-shaped rosettes of fleshy, lavender grey leaves. The rosettes grow up to 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter and spread by short stolons to form an up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) tall and 18 inches (45 cm) wide clump. In late summer to early fall, the rosettes are topped with up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall towers jammed with tiny, creamy flowers. Each flowering rosette dies away but is unnoticed among the mass of smaller rosettes.

Orostachys iwarenge (Chinese Dunce Cap)

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USDA hardiness zones 4a to 8b: from −30 °F (−34.4 °C) to 20 °F (−6.7 °C).

How to Grow and Care

As with most similar genera of the Crassulaceae family, this plant can survive in fairly poor soil so long as it is well-draining. This genera is very cold-hardy and can survive temperatures of -30 °F (-34 °C). Allow soil to dry to the touch between waterings and avoid getting water on the rosettes. Orostachys actively in spring and summer. It requires some bright light and does not tolerate high humidity well.

Orostachys self-propagates through offshoots, and at a given time, one plant will form a dense mat of many. Propagation is primarily through offset separation.

To separate an offset, remove soil from the offset's base to find the stolon (thick root which attaches the pup to the mother plant). It is best to use an offset that has already established some roots of its own. Cut the stolon close to the pup (to discourage roots growing from the stolon). Place the offset into a small pot with well-draining, sandy soil. Do not water until new growth is noted.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Orostachys.


Orostachys iwarenge is native to Japan.


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