Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sedum 'Autumn Joy' or Herbstfreude

Sedum 'Autumn Joy' or 'Herbstfreude'
This strong growing succulent from China and Japan can grow to about 60 cm and starts to flower about now. It is a true herbaceous plant and completely goes to ground over winter ,disappearing to just a few shoots barely visible on the surface of the soil. For this reason, it is a popular succulent to grow in cool temperate climates. It is less successful on the warm humid coast particularly if there is rain during February. Too much water swells the flowering stems and the whole plant collapses into a heap leaving a bare centre and horizontal stems. In cool climates ,the flower heads can be left to dry to a tan colour and these are decorative as a winter element when covered by an icy frost. brrr!
The safer beat in warm climates is to grow Sedum sieboldii which has delightful pale pink flowers and is fairly prostrate making it suitable to grow in a hanging basket.The foliage is also a nice pale blue grey.
2017 update: I no longer grow these cool climate Sedums

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