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Sedum Mexicanum Problems :(

by Ben
(Florida)

some of the shriveled leaves

some of the shriveled leaves

Hi Jacki! I'm a microbiology student currently, and I've been growing a single cactus for a few years -- she's big and strong with lots of cute lil offshoots :) -- but this year I decided to try growing some succulents!

I purchased a few small Sedum mexicanums from my local Lowe's and replanted them that day, into a somewhat spacious pot with a clipping from my big 'ol cactus, which just recently callused over and starting rooting :)

Although this lil cactus is doing great in the pot, my sedums are suffering terribly!

Many of their lower leaves have withered up to little brown or grey strings, some of their stems are very weak - a few broke! - and I'm afraid they're halfway to plant heaven...

I'm growing them in a special succulent/cactus/palm mix that's quick-draining. Additionally, they're located inside my back porch, which is pretty well shaded -- they get around 5-6 hours of pretty good indirect light though! Attached are some pictures of the stems and leaves. Also, if it helps, it's really humid down here in Florida!!

Thanks and have a nice night!
Ben

Hi Ben, from what I can see, this Burros Tail is suffering from too much moisture; don't water them for at least a week, and see what happens.

I generally resist the urge to water, and this seems to suit most cacti and succulents.

Growing them together like this probably won't be that great in a little while - the Sedum is quite vigorous, and will over take the tiny cactus. As well, they require slightly different care.

Cactus are happier when they get a complete drying out period, especially through the winter, and once they get more water that will trigger blooming. The Sedum will continue to grow throughout the year.

Just so you know, these kinds of Sedum do tend to 'shatter' or lose their leaves easily, so that's not a big deal. In most cases if the soil is dry, they too will root and grow, resulting in a mass of plants all tangled together.

It's also best to not 'over pot' them - use a pot only a bit bigger, that way they can quickly fill it, which triggers some top growth. A heavier type of pot (clay, hypertufa or similar) are best, or a hanging planter for Burros Tail.

Hope this helps get you back on track.
Jacki

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Jun 13, 2013
Thanks!
by: Ben

Thanks so much for the info, Jacki! I'm going to replant the little cactus as soon as I get home -- I want it to grow nice and strong :) -- and I will stop watering as well! And I just have one more question -- should I be keeping these Sedums in stronger light? They do get some good indirect afternoon light on the porch, but I'm just a little worried they might turn spindly and gangly in the long run...

Thanks again!
Ben

I would say they need quite bright light, either outside in a sun porch, or beside a very bright window. I put most of my tender succulents outside for the summer, in dappled shade under a willow tree, and that seems to be perfect. Bright sun in the morning, then shaded in the afternoon. Otherwise, they do tend to stretch - that's a good indication they need more light.

Jacki

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