Hens and Chicks Succulent
Hens and Chicks are a plant I have known since childhood. And until the recent succulent rage, over the last several years, I never gave them much thought. I love succulents, so many cool shapes and colors. For some reason I never gave thought to the fact that Hens and Chicks are a succulent. I guess I had cool taste even before I knew it. LOL
The image below was taken in the summer months, the plant gives off a blue-green color during the warmer months that is just lovely.
Hens and Chicks are also called Sempervivum.
Which means “live forever”, the plant grows and propagates quickly. I also didn’t know that there were more than 3000 varieties of this beauty. I only have one original plant which has quickly covered an area around our pond.
The variety we have is called Pacific Rim Supervivum. The light green leaves are tipped in crimson and silver hairs grow at the tip of the leaves. Before I photographed the hen close up I had no idea that the hairs existed. Pretty cool, eh?
When the Hen is at least a year old it will start producing Chicks on “runners”, you can leave these Chicks to surround the Hen or when the runner begins to wither you can transplant them.
Sempervivum: These grow babies on runners. Just pull off the chicks and plant elsewhere. It is best to remove the babies when the runner has begun to wither. Offsets root quickly and contact with soil is enough for them to start growing. Youngs Gardens
The Hen will mature at 3 years, at this time a stalk will sprout from the mature plant and flower. Once this has happened the Hen will die.
Thankfully this Hen has reproduced many Chicks as it’s at the end of it’s life cycle. When the Chicks are a year old they will each begin to produce more Chicks. Live forever, indeed!
As you can see the flower itself is a beauty and I’m sure that each different variety has it’s own bloom. These plants are really easy to grow and take care of. They like a well drained soil, so use compost or mulch for good drainage. The area around our pond is filled in with stone, these plants find the soil between them and take off.
These plants need very little water, as they store water in their leaves. In fact, with too much water the outside leaves begin to rot. With all the rain we’ve been having I just moved this pot inside. It will provide us with a little bit of Summer throughout the gloomy winter months.