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Sedum adolphii is a lovely flowering succulent belonging to the Crassulaceae family and native to Mexico. It features pointy dark-green moon slice shaped leaves that develop orange or reddish tips when exposed to bright sunlight. This succulent forms miniature golden rosettes: as the rosettes mature, they grow new leaves at the center and shed the older leaves on the soil.
Sedum adolphii produces white, star-shaped flowers in springtime creating an appealing contrast to the greenish-yellow leaf color and the reddish margins.
It’s also known as Sedum Golden Glow and Golden Sedum and is fast-growing up to 10″-12″ inches tall, and a fast-spreading plant about 2′ feet wide ideal for landscape or, as a houseplant, looks stunning in hanging baskets or terracotta containers.
Check out this video below for some quick facts on sedum adolphii!
Featured Image Credit @succumom
How To Care For Sedum Adolphii
Sedum adolphii is commonly used as a ground cover or in rock-gardens, given its ability to thrive in poor, sandy soils and its fast-spreading nature. It looks beautiful also on walls or terraces because it spreads quickly with a trailing long form. When growing Sedum, keep in mind that Sedum plants, generally speaking, need very little attention or care.
Image Credit @contrivecreations
It’s also popular as a houseplant given the fact that is not a cold-hardy plant and can barely survive at 29 Fahrenheit (-1.6 C°). If you live in a place where temperatures drop lower than 20 degrees Fahrenheit, it is best to keep the plant indoors.
Light And Water
Sedum adolphii definitely loves the sunlight and with regular sun exposure, you will notice the leaves develop orange or reddish tips.
If grown outdoors as part of a succulent garden, your Sedum should be planted is in an area that gets 6 hours of morning sunlight. It’s always a good idea to avoid exposing this succulent to the heat of the afternoon sun as its leaves can get sunburned.
Sedum adolphii has the same watering needs as most succulents: more often during the summer season and less often during winter when the soil tends to hold on to moisture longer. Always remember that it is sensitive to overwatering and needs ‘watering with care’, otherwise the roots rot and the plant will end up suffering from pests and diseases.
The best way to water this succulent is by the ‘soak and dry’ method: you want to water the soil until it is completely soaked and wait until it’s totally dried out before watering again (this may depend on your location and container). It’s also important to keep the succulents in well-draining soil in a pot with a drainage hole.
The plant needs to be fertilized only during the active growing months of spring and summer. Using a diluted fertilizer at ¼ strength should be sufficient to keep your sedum in great shape.
Pot And Soil
If you plan to grow sedum adolphii in a pot, and it’s important that you buy a terracotta or clay one with drain holes to reduce the risk of overwatering. Terracotta or clay pots provide a healthy environment for most plants. The porosity of clay allows air and moisture to penetrate the sides of the pot.
That being said, terracotta pots release moisture faster when it’s hot outside, which means you’ll need to water plants more frequently to prevent soil from drying out.
For best-growing results, use well-draining soil for sedum adolphii. You can use cactus or sandy soil and add gravel at a 1:1 ratio to improve the level of drainage. A Sedum adophii plant cannot sit in waterlogged soil or the plant will rot.
If you do need to add some nutrients to the soil, it is best to apply an organic fertilizer at half-strength during the growing season in the summer when the plant is actively growing.
When transplanting sedum adolphii, rinse the soil off of the roots and look for any signs of pests or decay. Don’t be afraid to prune roots too – it’s helpful and encourages new growth.
Avoid overwatering: during the repotting process, be careful not to soak the plant in water for too long or water it right after you put it in a new pot. Your sedum will get root rot if it gets too much water in the process.
Pests And Diseases
Sedums are quite pest and disease-resistant but they can still be harmed occasionally by insects, especially mealybugs. Treat the infestation as early as possible, when only a few insects are observed to keep the plant healthy and avoid contamination of other plants.
Getting rid of them can be quite challenging since these pests have a wooly protective cover making them resistant to common pesticides.
They have an amazing ability to hide in the unexpected and narrowest places like between stem and leaves, nested in dried up leaves, under pots, tables.
They can even hide in debris around the plant and lay their eggs (up to 600) out of sight but close to the plants so when the little nymphs hatch, they don’t have far to crawl.
This is why detecting them early and isolating them is the best practice. It’s also important to keep clean not only the pots but also the whole area around them.
Solution: if you happen to find a few bugs, it’s easy to squash them with a toothpick. Next, pull out the infected leaves and thoroughly check around the plant to see if there are any bugs left.
Once you have detected and isolated the infected plant, it’s crucial to keep an eye on it for several weeks, just to make sure there aren’t any other outbreaks.
Another possible scenario occurs with a large mealybugs infestation: in this case, it’s necessary to spray the plants with a 70% rubbing alcohol or isopropyl solution with multiple applications. To completely get rid of these tiny pests it’s necessary to kill and wash off every single one.
Sedum Adolphii is a very low maintenance plant and, although pruning is not necessary, it can benefit from it at least once a year to get rid of the past season’s dead growth. It’s very important to use sterilized pruning shears, scissors, or loppers to avoid contamination if you have previously used the same ones to treat infected plants.
Prune the plants back to about 1-2 inches above the ground after the first killing frost in the fall.
Cut off about one-third to one-half of your sedums’ height when tall varieties begin to get lanky, usually between May and July, depending on your climate. This step is optional but will encourage the growth of more compact plants. Keep in mind, however, that your sedums adolphii will not bloom for several weeks after pruning.
How To Propagate Sedum Adolphii
Sedum adolphii propagates easily due to its fast growth. Like with most succulents, you can choose to propagate using healthy leaves or stem cuttings. Any technique is effective and yields new plants within a few months, but keep in mind that the baby plants shouldn’t be watered during the first few weeks to a month to avoid root rotting.
It’s important to choose healthy leaves of your sedum adolphii for higher chances of success. Look for full and plump leaves, not dehydrated and flat leaves. Choose leaves that are uniformly colored without any discolorations, spots, or marks. Do not use leaves that are damaged, ripped, torn, or misshapen. Gently remove the leaves from the stem.
- Using your fingers, carefully twist off the leaves from the stem with your thumb and forefinger. You’ll notice that some leaves come off quite easily, whereas some others are firmly attached to the stem. Using a gentle motion, twist the leaf back and forth until it comes off.
- Make sure to remove the whole leaf, including the base that attaches to the stem otherwise your newly propagated plant will not survive.
- Before replanting the leaves in the new soil, allow the leaf to dry out for several days, to wound to dry and callous over.
- When the leaves are nice and dry, dip the ends into the rooting hormone (optional step) sticking them cut-side down into a well-draining succulent potting mix.
- While waiting for the leaf cuttings to root, keep them in a shaded place, away from direct sunlight.
- After almost a month, you’ll notice little pink roots growing from the cut and a new rosette will grow from the base of the leaf.
- When enough rosettes are grown, it’s time to gently remove the original leaf cuttings from the rosettes and repot these last ones in a new container with well-draining soil.
It’s very easy to propagate sedum adolphii from cuttings. To do so it’s essential that you cut healthy and young stems from the mother plant, using a sterile, sharp knife or pair of scissors. Once you have removed the stem, allow it to dry for several days before placing it on well-draining soil. Once the soil has dried out completely, you can water again, but make sure to not overwater your baby plant.
Sedum Adolphii Varieties
Due to its popularity, growers and gardeners have developed different varieties of sedum adolphii. Below are my two favorites.
Sedum adolphii ‘Firestorm’, a beautifully bred cultivar of ‘Golden Sedum,’ features elongated leaves with fiery red and orange margins, transitioning to a golden green shade towards the center of each rosette. The cooler the temperature, the more defined the red margins. It grows up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall can spread to 24 inches wide. Although thrives in poor, sandy soils, make sure to choose a location with full sun exposure.
The ‘soak and dry’ watering method mentioned above, in which the plant is given a thorough watering only once the soil has had a chance to completely dry out, works very well for this variety.
‘Firestorm’ is frost tender, and should only be grown outdoors in USDA zone 10a and above because can tolerate a very light frost, and you should move it indoors during cold winter months.
Sedum ‘Lime Gold’
This tender succulent variety, called ‘Lime Gold’ features lime green with red-orange flushed tips and grows up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall. Pointed, upright leaves form an attractive, plump rosette, and it blooms in spring with a small, star-shaped, yellow-white flower.
It’s a colorful trailing succulent perfect for containers and rock gardens. You can follow the above instructions for its care.
Hope you enjoyed reading this article on sedum adolphii and found it comprehensive and enlightening! If you like, feel free to leave a comment or share your knowledge on this topic in the section below.
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