Friday, February 7, 2014

Winter Hardy Succulents

Orostachys malacophyllus var. iwarenge


Since I have three acres (1.2 hectares) of land, most of it in full sun, it was natural to establish a small section of the yard as an outdoor cactus and succulent bed.  Most of the noticeable plants in the bed are large opuntias, cylindropuntias, yuccas, and agaves.  But here and there, among the rocks, are smaller winter hardy cacti and other succulents.  I have tried to grow a series of South Africa succulents, mostly mesembs, but it is a constant struggle to keep the local rabbits from eating, or damaging them.  One low growing succulent however, has done remarkable well, and doesn't seem to be on the rabbit menu.   This is Orostachys malacophyllus v. iwarenge.    
The genus Orostachys is a member of the Crassulaceae family and is native to a wide-spread area of temperate Asia, including Japan, China, and Russia.  O. malacophyllus var. iwarenge is native to Japan, and while not common in cultivation it is available through nurseries specializing in cold hardy succulents and alpine plants.  In my winter hardy C&S planting it has been a trouble-free plant that I have not given the praise it deserves.  I'll try to change that.  


1 comment:

  1. Nice to be able to grow some succulents outside. I have a few Semperviviums outside in pots.I have some trouble with foxes and squirrels. This Orostachys lives outside in a pot.