Senecio crassissimus Humbert
Vertical Leaf Senecio
Senecio crassissimus is an erect evergreen subshrub up to 24 inches (60 cm) tall and up to 18 inches (45 cm) wide, with thick, purple stems, holding stiff flattened 2 inch (5 cm) long, waxy, silver-grey, obovate leaves, with vivid purple margins, facing outwards. In winter the inflorescence rises from the stem tips up to 2 feet (60 cm), bearing an open branched head of bright yellow daisy flowers.
How to Grow and Care
Established plants are extremely drought tolerant. They do need some water, during the summer, but do not leave the soil wet for prolonged periods. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings in the winter, when they are somewhat dormant. Since they are growing in sandy soil, nutrients will need to be replenished. Fertilize annually, but lightly. Too much fertilizer will cause a lot of leggy growth.
Taller varieties can get floppy. You can prune them back to where the stem is firm, in very early spring. You can even root the cuttings.
Plants can be divided or repotted in early spring. If you are growing them in containers, they enjoy spending the summer outdoors. Wait until there is no danger of frost and move them back indoors in the fall.
Senecio can be grown from either seed or cuttings. Seeds prefer warm temperatures (55˚F / 13˚C). And constant moisture to germinate. Cuttings are easier and faster. Cut during the growing season, early spring to fall. Root in sandy soil, in containers.
Few pests bother Senecio. They can occasionally be affected by scale and mealy bugs. Rabbits found my String of Pearls quite tasty… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Senecio.
Native to Madagascar.
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