Sempervivum arachnoideum L.
Cobweb Houseleek, Cobweb Hen and Chick, Spider Web Hens and Chicks
Sedum arachnoideum, Sempervivum doellianum, Sempervivum heterotrichum
Sempervivum arachnoideum is a low-growing, evergreen succulent perennial that forms a mat of fleshy rosettes up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) in diameter. The leaves are green or reddish, with white, cobwebby hairs at the tips. The starry flowers are pink, up to 0.4 inch (1 cm) across and appear in flat cymes on stems up to 5 inches (12.5 cm) tall.
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 in the rock garden, scree bed, wall crevice, trough or alpine house. It is ideal in so many ways, as it quickly starts 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 there will be many offsets to 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 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.
Learn more at Medicinal Use of Cobweb Houseleek.
Subspecies, Cultivars, and Hybrids
- Sempervivum arachnoideum subsp. bryoides
- Sempervivum arachnoideum subsp. tomentosum
- Sempervivum arachnoideum 'Cebenese'
- Sempervivum arachnoideum 'Emily'
- Sempervivum arachnoideum 'Robin'
- Sempervivum arachnoideum 'Rubrum'
- Sempervivum arachnoideum 'Viridescens'
- Sempervivum barbulatum
- Back to genus Sempervivum
- Succulentopedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
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