Since I started growing succulents a few years ago, I’ve had many favorites. Learning to grow and propagate these low maintenance beauties is fun and rewarding. Many succulent plants have unique or unusual features, not common to regular houseplants and outdoor ornamentals. Many can thrive with little more than the right location. They’re so easy to grow that the propagation of succulents has become one of my go-to things.
Many of my favorite succulents at the beginning were of the Crassulaceae family, winter growing plants that includes the jade and sedum types. I learned early on that winter grower is a bit misleading. While these plants do grow in February and March, the growth spurt often starts in autumn and slows at the beginning of winter.
My favorite gardening hobby is propagation, and I found a few ways to multiply those in the Crassula family. Many of these types grow quickly for succulents and are ready for division after a few months, especially the sedums. Those like Angelina, Dragon’s Blood and Blue Spruce sedums multiply quickly in the ground. They might die back during cold winters, but they return with warm spring weather.
You can separate the strands and pot separately for more of these beauties. Cuttings grow easily as well. Cuttings from leaves, such as the jade, are easy to grow too. In fact, the leafy Crassulas can be multiplied from leaves with ease. While succulent leaf propagation is a slower process, it produces a new plant. If leaves fall off, as they sometimes will, simply lay them on a dry bed of succulent soil and provide bright light. Roots eventually develop at the raw end of the leaf. When this happens, provide slight moisture by spraying.
Continue this process as roots develop into a small plant. Let the plant grow until the mother leaf dies off and then pot it up. If doing this during warm weather, put the leaves outside in a bright light area, but out of direct sun.
The Crassula family has 1,500 species. With all these available, it is possible that your entire collection can come from these spectacular succulent plants. These also include Kalanchoe, Adromischus, Dudleya and Echeveria. Many are cold hardy and can grow permanently outdoors as yard displays (double check your specimens before expecting winter endurance). Most are easy to propagate, making it easy to fill beds, and many will flower too.