Houseplants forum: Aptenia Cordifolia - Succulent Ice Plant

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Name: Don
Meadville, PA - Crawford Co. - (Zone 5a)
Love of gardening grows on you!
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
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DonfromPA
Sep 21, 2016 6:50 AM CST
Recently tended my son-in-law's patio plants while he was on vacation and was captivated by a cascading succulent plant with a small red blossom he had growing in a tall container. Took a few cuttings and am currently rooting them in water. Roots already developing on three of the cuttings.

I had no idea what kind of plant it was but accidentally came across a photo of the plant on the internet and found it to be Aptenia Cordifolia - an ice plant - a perennial in warmer zones in which I live (NW PA.) I remember see a lot of ice plant ground covers when we lived in Charlotte, NC - but not the cascading type. Looked the plant up on the internet and found a variegated one on Ebay - 'Baby Sun Rose' 'Red Apple' that really caught my eye.

Even though it has a red blossom, I'm mostly interested in the foliage.
Does anyone currently grow this as a houseplant - or perhaps in the past? I have no fluorescent light fixtures and sunshine in winter in NW PA is pretty dismal - so wondering about the odds of being able to keep it alive and growing during the winter. Will move it out to sunny patio for the spring-summer-fall months.

Will appreciate any and all comments.
The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies - Gertrude Jekyll
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
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plantladylin
Sep 22, 2016 8:05 AM CST
Baby Sunrose (Mesembryanthemum 'Red Apple') sure is a pretty one! Although I've seen Sunrose growing in gardens here in Florida on occasion, I don't know if folks grow them as short lived annuals or if they survive year round. I tried growing them once but they didn't live long and I figured my lack of success was due to our high humidity.

Hopefully someone who grows these beauties as a houseplant or overwinters them inside will be along with advice.
We have many listed in our database: http://garden.org/plants/search/text.php?q=Mesembryanthemum&...

The Delosperma, also commonly called Ice Plant are real beauties too: http://garden.org/plants/search/text/?q=Delosperma&button=
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Don
Meadville, PA - Crawford Co. - (Zone 5a)
Love of gardening grows on you!
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
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DonfromPA
Sep 22, 2016 9:07 AM CST
Thanks, Lin, for your helpful comments. While living in Charlotte, NC there was a nursery that had rock gardens planted with both purple and yellow flowered ones - quite a fabulous display - the purple ones were a real eye-catcher. Probably better suited for outdoor gardening though as opposed to raising as houseplants.

BUT, I think I'll give the variegated ones a shot - just for the fun of it.


The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies - Gertrude Jekyll
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
Sep 22, 2016 9:49 AM CST
Don I grew it like my other succulents that I grow in pots. It lasted one winter but the second winter it died. It is like some of the succulents that I grow do not like my treatment which is cool and dry only water once or twice all winter. This one needed water the winter it died I only watered it once. Family got in the way and I did not care for the plants.

If you want to keep it over the winter inside place it in a cool room under 70 and water it only when it is bone dry. In my sun room that is about every 2 months. The year I killed it I did not give it any water all winter. Most of my succulents do fine but this one did not like not getting any water. My sun room as you know is not sunny because we in Pa are mostly cloudy all winter. I grow hundreds of succulents inside in the winter and I do not use grow lights. I find as long as they are cool and mostly dry there is no problem.
Name: Don
Meadville, PA - Crawford Co. - (Zone 5a)
Love of gardening grows on you!
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all!
Image
DonfromPA
Sep 22, 2016 12:14 PM CST
Thanks, Cinta for your helpful advice. I certainly know what you mean about PA's overcast and cloudy winter sky ....day after day. I already have cuttings of the green-leaf-red blossom one and plan to purchase the variegated leaf one - am very much partial to variegated foliage plants.
The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies - Gertrude Jekyll
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Image
plantladylin
Sep 22, 2016 2:49 PM CST
Regarding dreary winter skies; I was born in the south (Va.) but I've lived in Florida for almost 50 years now and I remember many years ago my sister in law (she's lived her entire life in the Syracuse N.Y. area) telling me that in winter they sometimes go four or five months without seeing the sun! Blinking I thought she was exaggerating but I've heard similar from others in that part of the country. It seems so bizarre to me; I can't even imagine having cloudy skies for days on end, much less months! It sure makes me understand the disorder called "SAD" (Seasonal Affective Disorder)! It would be so depressing to have cloudy, dreary skies for such a length of time and if it's COLD too ... oh my! Crying
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Cinta
Sep 22, 2016 3:24 PM CST
Lin, my doctor said as long as we live in this no sun for such long period of time coupled with the cold there is a better than double chance of having joint problems. I do not know if because of the climate I am use to but I enjoy the darkness. I absolutely love sitting in front of the fireplace and watching the snow. There is even a quite that you get that is wonderful.

I am not keen on too much sun. I traveled for year 30 yrs and I was only home probably 100 dys a year the rest of the year I was in Arizona, Florida, Puerto Rico, California and did not feel my best until I came home and got my dark time. Rolling on the floor laughing

Don you have made me want to get this plant again. I love variegated foliage and the red flower gives it another great pop.

Lin this is for you.
Thumb of 2016-09-22/Cinta/0b17f3


Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Image
plantladylin
Sep 22, 2016 4:16 PM CST
Cinta, oh my ... that is so beautiful! Lovey dubby
As much as I can't take the heat and humidity as I get older, I don't think I could handle snow and ice for very long at all. I'd enjoy a short vacation someplace that looks like your lovely photo but only for a couple of days. Sitting indoors in front of a roaring fire with large floor to ceiling windows to look at the beautiful scenery on the other side. I haven't owned a winter coat since 1967. Green Grin!

About 20 or so years ago, my husband and I went to Colorado at Thanksgiving and I had to borrow warm clothes for the trip. It was a shock when we got off the plane (temp was -7ยบ) but after the first day and the initial shock, we realized it was a drier cold than what we get on the east coast and it didn't bother us at all. That was the first and only time in my life I've ever been in below 0 temperatures ... also the first and only time I've ever seen a snow plow. Green Grin!
~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Pennsylvania (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
Image
Cinta
Sep 22, 2016 7:02 PM CST
This house was perfect for my retirement. It sits back off the street and every room looks out over trees and land. It is like sitting in the middle of the woods. Some of the rooms do have floor to ceiling windows and my morning room/sun room is all windows. I do not have to go out there unless I want to. I have a lot of coats all fur lined. I have no plans of being cold when I am out there.

I hated winter when I worked because I had to get to the airport and sliding around in a car is scary. I wrecked a couple of cars should have been dead once when I slid under a truck. But I lived to retire and enjoy winter. Rolling on the floor laughing

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