Plant of the Month

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Blue Chalk Sticks Senecio mandraliscae

  • Plant Form: Succulent groundcover
  • Water Use: Low
  • Mature Size: 1-1.5 ft. tall x 2-3 ft. wide
  • Exposure: Full sun, part sun
  • Bloom Time: Summer (June – August)
  • Native to: South Africa
  • Hardiness: Cold hardy to 15°F
Invite this succulent ground cover into your yard for year-round interest from its chalky blue color and sculptural leaves. Blue Chalk Sticks is especially attractive when nestled next to red-tinged foliage, orange flowers, or dark purple flowers or leaves.

Blue Chalk Sticks meets two prized landscape design features: color and texture. Creating a dense, sprawling mat of bluish foliage, its four-inch-long, fleshy curved spikes that angle upward look like they could be from the ocean floor. Prized for its chalky blue color, not its insignificant flowers, this succulent is striking alongside greens and dark purples, and really pops next to orange flowers and red-tinged foliage. Thriving in well-drained soils, this groundcover looks great in gravel beds, rock gardens, and containers. Tolerant of dry soils and any amount of heat, this beauty is also easy to re-root from stem cuttings. You can invite it indoors in a pot if you have hard frosts; all it asks for is bright sunlight, great drainage, and infrequent water to prevent root rot.  Perfect in borders, containers, rock gardens, as groundcovers, and in mass plantings.

Check out our “Garden Tasks” for February