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Sedum lanceolatum (Spearleaf Stonecrop)

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Scientific Name

Sedum lanceolatum Torr.

Common Names

Lanceleaf Stonecrop, Lance-leaved Stonecrop, Spearleaf Stonecrop

Synonyms

Amerosedum lanceolatum, Sedum lanceolatum subsp. lanceolatum, Sedum shastense

Scientific Classification

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

Origin

This species is native to western Canada and the United States. It grows in exposed, rocky mountainous habitat at elevations of up to 13,280 feet (4,050 m) in the Rocky Mountains.

Description

Sedum lanceolatum is a succulent that forms rosettes of green, gray-green, blue-green, or reddish-green leaves with papillose surfaces. In late spring and summer, the rosettes elongate to about 8 inches (20 cm) and form leafy flower stalks. Leaves are lance-shaped, round in cross-section, and up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) long. Flowers are star-shaped, yellow, sometimes tinged with red, and appear in clusters.

This species is the host plant of the butterfly species Parnassius smintheus.

The specific epithet "lanceolatum" derives from the Latin "lanceolatus," meaning "armed with a lance or having the form of a lance" and refers to the shape of the leaves.

Sedum lanceolatum (Spearleaf Stonecrop)

Photo by robroymcg

How to Grow and Care for Sedum lanceolatum

Light: Sedums grow best in locations where they will enjoy the full sun at least six or more hours per day. Most species will tolerate partial shade but will not thrive in deep shade. Keep indoor S. lanceolatum in a sunny window or under artificial lights.

Soil: These succulents do not like to sit in waterlogged soil, so drainage is essential to prevent root rot. Choose a well-draining soil mix.

Hardiness: Sedums are tolerant of heat and freezing temperatures. S. lanceolatum can withstand temperatures as low as -20 to 30 °F (-28.9 to -1.1 °C), USDA hardiness zones 5a to 9b.

Watering: These plants are drought-tolerant but do need some water. S. lanceolatum does it best with regular watering from spring through fall. Water thoroughly and wait for the soil to dry out before watering again.

Fertilizing: A balanced organic fertilizer each spring is generally all Sedums require. As long the plant is divided annually and provided with fresh soil, feeding is not necessary.

Repotting: Sedums in containers do require little more care than those in gardens. Repot your S. lanceolatum when it outgrows its current pot by moving it out to a larger container to hold the plant better.

Propagation: Once you have one Sedum, it is easy to make more by taking stems or leaf cuttings and dividing the plant. Sedums are also easy to grow from seed. Take cuttings in spring when the plant is in the period of active growth. Once S. lanceolatum has finished flowering, it is the right time for division. Spring or summer is the best time to sow the seeds.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Sedum.

Toxicity of Sedum lanceolatum

Sedums are not listed as toxic for people but can be mildly toxic to pets and children.

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