Thunderhead Stonecrop flower buds
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Thunderhead Stonecrop in bloom
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 30 inches
Spacing: 18 inches
Hardiness Zone: 4a
Other Names: Autumn Stonecrop, Showy Stonecrop
Brand: Terra Nova
An upright stonecrop with huge clusters of deep rose flowers held atop handsome, gray-green succulent foliage; a drought-tolerant perennial that does best in poor soils; a colorful groundcover or feature in containers or rock gardens
Thunderhead Stonecrop features showy clusters of rose star-shaped flowers rising above the foliage from mid summer to mid fall. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its attractive succulent round leaves emerge olive green in spring, turning grayish green in color with hints of rose throughout the season. The burgundy stems are very colorful and add to the overall interest of the plant.
Thunderhead Stonecrop is a dense herbaceous perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and is best cleaned up in early spring before it resumes active growth for the season. It is a good choice for attracting bees and butterflies to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Thunderhead Stonecrop is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- Rock/Alpine Gardens
- Border Edging
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Thunderhead Stonecrop will grow to be about 26 inches tall at maturity, with a spread of 24 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 18 inches apart. Its foliage tends to remain dense right to the ground, not requiring facer plants in front. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 15 years. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!
This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist growing conditions, but will not tolerate any standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in poor soils, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Thunderhead Stonecrop is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.
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