Sempervivum arachnoideum subsp. bryoides (C.B.Lehm. & Schnittsp.) H.Jacobsen
Cobweb Houseleek, Cobweb Hen and Chicks
Sempervivum arachnoideum subsp. bryoides, Sempervivum bryoides, Sempervivum heterotrichum var. bryoides
Sempervivum arachnoideum var. bryoides is a mat-forming succulent that forms very small rosettes of fleshy green leaves tipped with red and covered in a web of white hairs. The rosettes grow up to 0.4 inches (1 cm) in diameter. Mature rosettes form a stem with a terminal cluster of pink flowers in the summer.
USDA hardiness zones 5a to 8b: from −20 °F (−28.9 °C) to 20 °F (−6.7 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Relatively easy to grow in a container or the rock garden, scree bed, wall crevice, trough, or alpine house. They are ideal in so many ways, as they quickly start to form very tight clusters of rosettes, filling in Sempervivum walls, mosaics, and topiary, and their shallow yet fibrous root systems hold soil in place even in vertical plantings. After the plant blooms and sets seed, it will die, but many offsets will take its place.
Plant in well-drained succulent soil mix in full sun to light shade. Water regularly during the growing season and allow the soil to dry out before watering again. Water very little during the winter months.
The crushed leaves or their juice is applied externally to boils, wounds, etc., and is also used to stop nose bleeds. The slightly warmed juice has been used to relieve ear inflammations, and toothaches can be relieved by chewing on the leaves. When macerated and infused in vinegar, the plant can be used to get rid of warts and corns.
The leaves are harvested in the summer and are best used when fresh since they are difficult to dry properly. The leaf pulp is used to make a cooling face mask for reddened or sunburned skin.
This variety is native to the mountains of central and southern Europe.
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