Cactus and Tender Succulents forum: care of sedum / burro's tail type succulents PNW?

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volcanicclay
Aug 7, 2017 1:01 PM CST
Quick question - I live in the Pacific NW and there are some lovely little rain-adapted succulents that I often see as ground cover or fills in beds, or paired with hens and chicks. Are these tough to establish? They seem to be quite well adapted once they are going. I'm just curious if they're something I can make little cuttings of and get going with minimal effort or if they need a lot of TLC the first year or so.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
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plantmanager
Aug 7, 2017 1:10 PM CST
I wouldn't recommend the burro's tail types, but many sedums are wonderful ground cover plants. One to try might be Sedum hispanicum. There are some varieties that have white flowers, and others with pink flowers.
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Aug 7, 2017 1:12 PM CST

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Check on the hardiness of the burro's tail sedums, they may not be the same in this respect.

Burro's Tail (Sedum morganianum)
Sedum (Sedum burrito)

You can grow these plants from leaves or cuttings and they are quick to root in pots (within weeks). Within a year after starting cuttings, given good care, you should have stems long enough that they start hanging over the side of the pot. As for how long it takes them to be established in the ground, that's something I have not tried. That presumably would take another year or so after you put the rooted cuttings in the ground. During the first 12 months after installation (roughly) I like to water weekly, and you will see plants benefit from summer water during the drought.
Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Aug 7, 2017 1:19 PM CST
Hello volcanicclay, Sedum morganianum or burro's tail is easy to plant. Each of the leaves can easily be laid down on a well draining mix and make either new roots or new leaves first. The thing you have to observe though is to make the media very well draining, it will not like sitting on very wet media, needs good airflow at root zone and all around it too.

In my area, since it is so dry here, with no rain for 5 to 6 months and exceedingly hot temps, it appreciates some misting of its vines which I do only in early mornings. But once the season change to the cooler season, I just water as needed the soil area. Thankfully our mild winters is okay with it.

If what you will get is an already live plant, make sure to use a container with drain holes, better wider than too deep. It has such a fine root system that grows very shallow, so it will not need a very deep container. I use cacti mix with lots of pumice or perlite, to really make the media well draining. You can top dress with poultry grit (insoluble crushed granite) to help keep the roots cooled down, but still well draining. It likes growing in bright area, ideally morning sun area and part shade in the afternoon.
Name: Karen
NM (Zone 7b)
Region: New Mexico Region: Arizona Cactus and Succulents Greenhouse Sempervivums Bromeliad
Adeniums Garden Ideas: Level 1 Tropicals Xeriscape Garden Art Plumerias
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plantmanager
Aug 7, 2017 2:53 PM CST
I may be mistaken, but I thought she wanted to plant these in the ground for a ground cover. The Donkey Tail Sedum would die in winter for sure. I'm not sure about the Sedum Burrito, but I'd guess it needs at least an zone 8 site. Growing them in pots is easy, but you'd have to take them in during the winter.
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Aug 7, 2017 4:00 PM CST
Yes, Sedum burrito and Sedum morganianum are best grown in containers above ground, or in hanging baskets. Then brought indoors for the rest of the winter season. There are other types of Sedum which grows good on ground level, like Sedum dasyphyllum, Sedum mexicanum etc. They can grow well on PNW weather, but rain adaptation will depend also how well draining the location you plant them in. Got to make a good mound so the water flows away fast. And yes, you can easily get cuttings, and plant them in ground. I would put a lot of pumice around the base of the plant, so it is not sitting in moist media for a long time. In my area, I have them in containers and in part shade, they will get fried here by our dry summer heat if exposed direct sun.

PNW weather is cooler, so they will thrive there better as with most alpine succulents. However, your area does get more rainfall and much colder, so it helps to be prepared to put up something to shelter them in case conditions go much colder and wetter than expected. Cold and dry is okay, but too cold and too wet, is always a bad combo for any succulent. I have read somewhere at times, they bury the succulents in layers of leaf mulch especially if forecasts are calling for 20F and below. Snow at times insulates the plants too from further cold damage, but it is the thawing process that really takes its toll later.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Aug 7, 2017 7:13 PM CST
Baja! You got a new title!! Did it come with a raise? Smiling
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Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Aug 7, 2017 7:23 PM CST
Oops! I was so excited by Baja's new job title, I forgot to add my 2 cents.

Sedum morganianum and Sedum Burrito are the same plant. No one is sure where this plant came from originally but they do not creep, they hang. Not a good ground cover.

They will survive down to just above freezing for short periods of time.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Aug 7, 2017 7:23 PM CST

Moderator

It makes me feel very moderate. Smiling

According to the CoL, Sedum burrito is a valid species. It was described as such in 1977. Whether it is actually distinct may be subject to some debate, though it looks different enough to me. See comments on this page.

Sedum (Sedum burrito)
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Aug 7, 2017 7:37 PM (+)]
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