January 4, 2014
Sedums are a large genus of flowering plants in the Crassulaceae family, with as many as six hundred different species. These succulents vary from herbs and annuals to shrubs. Sedums, sometimes known as Stonecrops, store water in its thick leaves and stems, making them drought resistant. The plant is also deer resistant. These plants need very little, if any care and are a favorite of bees and butterflies. Sedums have green leaves, with many of the different plants’ leaves turning red in late fall.
These flowers range from low-growing ground cover to those growing to a height of two feet. Their blooms usually have five petals, and range in color from pink, red or purple to yellow or white. The darker color flowers bloom in the fall while the lighter colors bloom from May until August. Sedums are easy to grow and do best in a sandy (or average), well-drained soil and in full sun but can grow in light shade. These plants will tolerate poor soil and hot, dry weather. If the plant is grown in too rich a soil or receives too much water, they will flop over when its flower heads get too heavy. The plant sprouts in early spring in a dense crown of shoots. The origins of this flower are Asia.
This particular Sedum in these photographs are Autumn Joys. This plant grows upright to a height of eighteen inches, with grayish-green three-inch leaves. Autumn Joys blooms from August until November. Its flower, which many describe as looking like broccoli, are four to six-inch clusters of half-inch blooms in the shape of a star that range in color from yellow and orange to pink and red.
German nurseryman and Sedum breeder Georg Arends (1863-1952) crossbred two types of Sedums, Spectabile and Telephium to create Almond Joys, which were first sold in 1955. Their flowers start off bright pink and turns to a cherry red when in full bloom. These plants should be left alone over the winter to provide birds its seeds. Autumn Joys should be divided every three to four years. Older plants tend to split in its center if not divided.
If I am fortunate to have you view my photographs and you find the color saturation too much or the color schemes of the mats do not match either themselves or the photograph, please let me know via a comment. Being color-blind, what might look great to me might look like sh*t to everyone else!
Steven H. Spring