Patience is a virtue. Everyone know that.
But maybe you’ve just moved into a new place and it’s looking a bit bare in the nature department.
Or maybe you’re new to growing succulents and just want to kick start your collection while you’re full of enthusiasm.
While succulents are generally known as low maintenance, long lasting species that can last a lifetime, there are some variants that show signs of groth a lot quicker than average.
Our top 3 species of fastest growing succulents are:
1. Sedums – Species like Sedum Album (White Stonecrop) and Sedum Spurium ‘Fuldaglut’ will cover a large patch of your garden in no time.
2. Kalanchoe – Kalanchoe Daigremontana, Kalanchoe Pinnata, and Kalanchoe Tubiflora are some of the fastest-growing species.
3. Portulacaria Afra – Grows into one of the largest succulents around given enough time.
Of course, fast is all relative. None of these plants are going to challenge the record for the fastest growing plant in the world but, in the succulent world, they can be considered as the sprinters of the group.
There are hundreds of species of Sedum and they are well known as fast growing succulents with the Stonecrop and Spurium Fuldaglut varieties often being used as ground cover.
Gardeners love growing White Stonecrop and Spurium Fuldaglut for a few reasons:
- They happily grow in sunny areas that other plants can’t tolerate
- They quickly grow to cover bare spots
- They are super low maintenance – it’s been said that the only thing needing less care than a Stonecrop is a stone itself!
Sedum are easy to plant too – just put them on the ground where you want them to grow and they’ll take care of the rest, it really is that easy. They root easily and will fill cracks in walls or walkways where there’s very little soil available. This actual favors the Sedums as good drainage, like with most succulents, is vital. Too much, or standing water will kill your Sedums before you know it.
Sedums will quickly spread and are perfectly at home in poor soil where other plants might struggle. Not only does this mean they pretty much thrive on neglect but, because they grow where others won’t, they are great for effortless weed control. Once established there’s not much that will push these guys out of their homes.
Kalanchoe plants are a species of succulent with thick leaves that hail from the subtropical island paradise of Madagascar.
Kalanchoe Tubiflora, also known as Mother of Millions, is one of the most popular and fast growing varieties, although you could say they are cheating a little – it’s not so much that they grow particularly quickly but they self propagate so they grow by multiplying.
Small buds grow at the end of the leaves which simply fall off and start to grow where they land. Not only does that make Kalanchoe Tubiflora one of the easiest succulents to propagate, it also means you’ll have an army of new plants growing before you know it – no wonder they call this one ‘Mother of Millions’!
Kalanchoe Pinnata is another popular and fast growing plant from the Kalanchoe family. Fully formed new plants can be grown from the plantlets that form along the edge of the leaves in as little as 2-3 weeks and from there they’ll go on to be anywhere from 24-48 inches high.
Once they reach maturity you can look forward to the beautiful, drooping pink flowers that grow on the end of its branches.
Not one of the most common succulents, Portulacaria Afra is often confused with Jade plants and is even called ‘Miniature Jade’ or Dwarf Jade’, despite the fact that it can grow all the way up to 15 – 20 feet outdoors in its natural habitat of South Africa.
When it’s not being mistaken for a Jade plant, Portulacaria Afra is more commonly known as ‘Elephant Bush’ because, well, it’s a bush that elephants like to eat (along with Rhinos, Goats and people even use it in salads and soups for its sour flavor).
If you’re not willing to wait a few decades for your Elephant Bush to reach it’s full potential then how about pruning it into a Bonsai tree? Portulacaria Afra make a great choice for Bonsai because they grow very quickly and can be easily trained into the shape you want.
Another great benefit of Elephant Bushes is their capacity to capture carbon – a single hectare of these plants could capture up to 4.2 tonnes of carbon per year.
Of course, not many people will have a spare hectare to devote to their succulents but having just one of these around would provide a nice boost in air quality in your home.
So there you have it.
While your succulents might not shoot up like a sunflower over the course of a few weeks, if you pick one of the varieties listed above you’ll definitely see some real movement before long, and they’ll last a darn site longer than those show-off sunflowers!
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