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Pachyphytum oviferum (Moonstones)

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Scientific Name

Pachyphytum oviferum Purpus

Common Names

Moonstones, Sugaralmond Plant

Scientific Classification

Family: Crassulaceae
Subfamily: Sedoideae
Tribe: Sedeae
Subtribe: Sedinae
Genus: Pachyphytum

Description

Pachyphytum oviferum is a prostrate, succulent plant, up to 4 inches (10 cm) tall and up to 12 inches (30 cm) wide, with white stems, bearing pale blue-green to bluish-purple, rounded leaves in a rosette at the tips of the stems. The flowers, which appear in winter to early spring atop reddish, up to 1 foot (30 cm) long stems, have red-orange petals surrounded by fleshy sepals the same color as the foliage.

Photo via flickr.com

Hardiness

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

How to Grow and Care

Pachyphytum will not tolerate frosts well. Temperatures below 20 °F (-6 °C) will kill the plant, and temperatures which may go below 45 °F (7 °C) during the extended period should be avoided. It tolerates high heat and intense sunlight. As with most succulents from the Crassulaceae family, Pachyphytum can tolerate (and even appreciated) poor soil conditions, so long as it is well-draining. It can thrive in full or partial sunlight.

Allow the soil to dry out before watering, and be careful to avoid getting water on the leaves. In winter, the plants will require more water, as winter begins its active growth season. If you are unsure when to water your plant, watch the lowermost leaves for signs of drying and water them then. Pachyphytum is far more likely to survive under-watering than over-watering. The thick fleshy leaves will appear wilted and a bit "under-full" when they need water.

One of the most common pests to houseplants is the mealybug, and your Pachyphytum may fall prey to this pest. The symptoms of a mealybug infestation are slowed or stopped growth (though in summer this is a normal sign of dormancy)… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Pachyphytum

Origin

Pachyphytum oviferum is native to Mexico.

Forms

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