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Products > Senecio serpens
Senecio serpens - Blue Chalksticks
Image of Senecio serpens
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Asteraceae (Sunflowers)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Summer/Fall
Synonyms: [Curio repens]
Height: <1 foot
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 20-25 F
May be Poisonous  (More Info): Yes
Senecio serpens (Blue Chalksticks) - A small succulent that hugs the ground, branching from the base, suckering from roots and rooting along the stems. The prostrate stems hold short powdery 1 to 2 inch long blue-green finger-like fleshy leaves. Small white flowers in few flowered corymbs rise just above the foliage summer through fall. Plant in full sun in well-drained soil. Requires little water. Hardy to around 20 F. This plant is a great small scale groundcover and while similar to the more common Senecio mandraliscae, it grows a bit tidier and lower, has smaller leaves and is far less vigorous. This plant comes from the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa and was first introduced into cultivation in 1710. The name Senecio comes from the Latin word 'senex' meaning "old" or "old man" in reference to its downy head of seeds and the specific epithet means "creeping". This plant is much smaller and slower growing than the similarly colored and more vigorous Senecio mandraliscae. Recent treatment of this plant in the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew databases has the current name of this plant as Curio repens but we continue to list it under its older more commonly used name for convenience and to avoid confusing our customers and staff.  Information displayed on this page about  Senecio serpens is based on the research conducted about it in our library and from reliable online resources. We also note those observations we have made of this plant as it grows in the nursery's garden and in other gardens, as well how crops have performed in our nursery field. We will incorporate comments we receive from others, and welcome to hear from anyone who may have additional information, particularly if they share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.