A spidery cobweb plant!
Sempervivum arachnoideum is a species native to the mountains of Europe (Pyrenees, Corsica, the Apennines and Cantabrian Mountains). It is an orophyte (*) succulent found at altitudes of between 400 and 3000 m on rocks, scree and in cracks and crevices.
Its sub-species Sempervivum arachnoideum subsp tomentosum forms robust rosettes of more than 3 cm in diameter with the ends of their leaves connected by white araneous (**) threads. Over the years, the plant can develop into a colony. Summer flowering of salmon pink flowers.
This curious plant is easy to grow and was first introduced into domestic gardens in 1699. It works well:
- in pots or troughs or as part of a green roof;
- as edging in a rock garden:
- on an old dry stone wall;
- in-between paving stones.
Accompanying plants: Sedum purpurascens, Sedum spathulifolium, Sedum spurium 'Voodoo', Artemisia caucasica, Artemisia laxa.
The Sempervivums are as undemanding of care as the Sedums. They like a warm location, sandy, neutral to alkaline soil, even if it is poor and dry. A fine gravel mulch will protect the plant from too much damp in winter and will set off the silvery rosettes to good effect.
Common name: Cobweb house-leek or Hen-and-chicks
(*) An orophyte is a plant that grows in a subalpine habitat.
(**) araneous: extremely thin and delicate, like a cobweb.
Sempervivum arachnoideum L.
Step, E., Bois, D., Favourite flowers of garden and greenhouse
- vol. 2: t. 99 (1896-1897) [D.G.J.M. Bois] -
- 9,5cm pot
- Hardiness zones : zone 6-10
- Height: less than 10 cm
- Plant spacing: 30 cm
- Flower colour:
- Flowering period:
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Large rounded, slightly downy, silvery-green rosettes£3.49
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