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Senecio scaposus (Woolly Senecio)


Scientific Name

Senecio scaposus DC.

Common Names

Woolly Senecio


Senecio scaposus var. scaposus, Cacalia tomentosa, Senecio calamifolius

Scientific Classification

Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Asteroideae
Tribe: Senecioneae
Subtribe: Senecioninae
Genus: Senecio


Senecio scaposus is a small, stemless, or nearly stemless succulent that forms a tight rosette of fleshy, bright green leaves with silvery-white woolly covering. It grows up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall. Leaves are upright, bean-like, and up to 4 inches (10 cm) long. Flowers are showy yellow, daisy-like, up to 1.4 inches (3.5 cm) across, and appear in summer.

Senecio scaposus (Woolly Senecio)

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USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b: from 25 °F (−3.9 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Established Senecios 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 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 and constant moisture to germinate. Cuttings are easier and faster. Cut during the growing season, from early spring to fall. Root in sandy soil, in containers.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Senecio.


Senecio scaposus is native to South Africa (Little Karoo in the Western Cape to the Kei River in the Eastern Cape).



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