Also known as “burgundy,” Crassula platyphylla remains one of the best succulents to grow at home. Native to South Africa, this succulent is famous for its thick and fleshy leaves. The leaves turn burgundy or red when the plant is under stress. The succulent is part of the Crassulaceae family and Crassuloideae subfamily. The Crassula platyphylla is a relatively slow-growing succulent that can reach approximately six inches in height when mature. The plant grows in dense clusters and takes an upright, oval shape.
So, how do you take care of Crassula platyphylla? Growing Crassula Platyphylla is relatively easy and can be done indoors or outdoors. The succulent is drought-tolerant and prefers well-draining soil with lots of air pockets. It can thrive in USA hardiness zones 9 to 11b without issues. Don’t expose it to temperatures below 25 degrees Fahrenheit; be careful with watering. The biggest threat to the overall survival of your Crassula platyphylla is overwatering. Ensure the potting mix is completely dry before watering. Feed the succulent every two weeks during the active growing season to aid growth. Ensure you dilute the fertilizer before using it.
This blog post discusses everything you need to know about growing Crassula platyphylla. Read on to learn more.
Crassula platyphylla: Quick Overview
Crassula platyphylla is a clumping and spreading succulent known for its thick, waxy leaves with red margins that tend to intensify when the plant is stressed.
The plant is native to South Africa and usually blooms during spring and summer. The flower stalks emerge with yellow flowers.
The succulent belongs to the Crassulaceae family and Crassuloideae subfamily. It is known as ‘burgundy’ because of its red-tinged leaves under drought conditions.
It grows to a height of six inches even though it doesn’t have an extensive root system. Typically, it grows in clusters and takes an upright, oval shape.
How to Grow Crassula Platyphylla
Growing Crassula platyphylla is relatively easy and can be done indoors or outdoors. Here are a few tips on how to grow this succulent:
1. Watering Requirements
Since the Crassula platyphylla is a succulent, it has the exact watering needs of other succulent plants. You must be careful with the amount of water if you want it to thrive and stay healthy.
Don’t overwater the succulent, and don’t allow it to sit in water for too long.
The succulent requires regular watering during the active growing season between April and September.
However, you must reduce the watering frequency during autumn and winter when the succulent slides into dormancy. Water sparingly during this time to avoid damaging the plant.
The best type of water to use is rainwater. Avoid tap water at all costs since it contains fluoride or chlorine that could cause irreversible damage to your plant.
If you must use tap water, consider diluting it with distilled water before use. Also, let it sit still in an open container overnight before use.
There are two popular watering methods that you can use to water your Crassula platyphylla.
Each method has its advantages and disadvantages. The advantage of the first method is that you’re sure all the water reaches the plant’s roots.
The drawback is that it could lead to root rot if you allow the plant to sit in the water for too long.
On the other hand, with tray watering, you don’t have to worry about root rot since excess water can quickly be drained out of the pot.
The downside is that only some water reaches the plant’s roots, meaning they need more hydration.
2. Light Requirements
Crassula platyphylla is native to warm parts of South Africa and has adapted to the bright sun. As such, this succulent needs plenty of direct sunlight to thrive.
You should expose your plant to direct sunlight for up to six hours daily to absorb enough light energy for growth and development.
If you’re growing it indoors, place it near a bright window with plenty of sunlight. A south-facing windowsill will do, but you can still use an east- or west-facing one.
If you live in an area with intense sun rays, consider providing your succulent some shade during the day to avoid sunburn.
On the contrary, you may be forced to install artificial light if you live in an area with the uncertainty of sunlight or during winter when days are short.
Place the plant at least 12 inches away from the artificial light source and supplement it with natural sunlight during the day.
Be careful when choosing an artificial light source. Some lights produce more heat than others, so avoid such lights to prevent your succulent from getting burned.
Ideally, use full-spectrum LED lights that produce little to no heat.
3. Temperature and Humidity
Closely related to the light requirements are the temperature and humidity. Crassula platyphylla is not a cold-hardy plant and will only thrive in temperatures of between 50-86°F (10-30°C). However, it can still tolerate occasional cold snaps or heat waves.
But don’t be fooled by the succulent’s sun-loving traits because it can still suffer irreversible sunburn when exposed to too much heat.
Consider making an appropriate shade to protect it from extreme heat during summer.
Another thing you must be extremely careful with when growing this succulent at home is humidity levels. Crassula platyphylla is a low-humidity plant that thrives in dry climates.
Therefore, you must keep the humidity levels around its growing area as low as possible to prevent it from becoming diseased or being attacked by pests like aphids and mealybugs.
4. Fertilizer Requirements
Apart from providing your Crassula platyphylla with the right light, temperature, humidity, and watering requirements, it would be best to feed it appropriately.
This succulent species is known to be a slow grower, meaning you don’t have to fertilize it too often.
A good rule of thumb is to fertilize your plant once every three months during spring and summer using an all-purpose fertilizer.
You can also use a liquid fertilizer and dilute it to ¼ of its potency before application on your succulent.
Avoid fertilizing during fall, winter, or when there’s too little light because it may not absorb all the nutrients, and you risk over-fertilizing it.
5. Soil and Potting Requirements
Regarding soil, Crassula platyphylla prefers a well-draining mix with lots of air pockets. If you grow your succulent in a pot, use a potting mix specifically made for succulents and cacti.
The ideal growing container should have plenty of drainage holes to prevent waterlogging. The potting mix you choose for your Crassula platyphylla must be lightweight and quality.
Avoid using soilless potting media when growing this succulent because it will cause it to sit in water for too long, which can lead to irreversible damage.
While there are many different types of potting mix, one of the most popular choices is cactus potting soil.
Alternatively, use a regular potting mix mixed with perlite and pumice to encourage fast draining of excess water. This mixture also creates air pockets needed for the survival of Crassula platyphylla.
Consider adding some compost to your potting mix before planting to increase the nutrient supply for your succulent. This will encourage growth and ensure your plant stays healthy.
Consider repotting your Crassula platyphylla every two or three years. When you notice new growth begins to appear on your plant in early spring or late winter, you should know it is a clear sign for repotting.
Generally, the Crassula platyphylla growing container should have approximately three inches of free space. So, a three-inch Crassula platyphylla should be planted in a six-inch pot.
The repotting process can be pretty tricky, especially for beginners. The first thing you need to do is to remove the plant from its existing pot.
Carefully lift it and gently shake off some old soil before transferring it into a new container with a fresh, well-draining mix.
Gently press down on the soil around the plant’s base and water generously to give your succulent a good start in its new home.
Lastly, pruning is an excellent technique that ensures your plant remains beautiful and healthy.
Any time your Crassula platyphylla grows larger than intended, clip off the excess growth with clean pruning shears.
Only trim off dead or discolored leaves since they steal nutrients from other parts of your plant.
Prune carefully and be sure not to cut too deeply into the foliage, which can result in irreversible damage.
The best time to prune your succulent is in late winter or early spring. This helps to encourage new growth, which means more flowers for you to enjoy during the growing season.
Pruning also keeps your plant neat and prevents it from becoming too wild and overgrown.
The Crassula platyphylla is an easy-to-care-for and low-maintenance succulent that adds a touch of beauty and elegance to any garden or home.
With enough sunlight, the right temperature, a regular watering schedule, low humidity levels, and appropriate fertilizing, you can ensure your plant stays healthy and happy for many years.
Last update on 2023-07-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API