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Products > Crassula tetragona
Crassula tetragona - Miniature Pine Plant

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Crassulaceae (Stonecrops)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Spring/Summer
Synonyms: [Crassula fruticosa, Crassula caffra]
Height: 3-4 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Crassula tetragona (Miniature Pine Tree) - A small upright fast growing succulent shrub to 3 to 4 feet tall to 2 to 3 feet wide with sparsely branched stems that darken to brown with age with the younger stems green and holding narrow succulent green 1 inch long leaves in crossed pairs perpendicular to the stems. The small white flowers appear in profusion on a terminal inflorescence at branch tips in late spring and early summer. Plant in full sun to light shade in a well-drained soil and irrigated occasionally to infrequently - this is a heat loving drought tolerant plant that is easy to grow and easy to root out from broken stems and leaves. Makes a nice container plant and is useful in small containers where it can look like a bonsai pine tree. Reliably hardy to around 28F and able to take it a bit colder for short durations. It is native to a wide area of South Africa, from the Orange River boundary of Namaqualand on the west to beyond the Kei River in the Eastern Cape on the east so occurring in both winter rainfall and of summer rainfall regions. The genus Crassula was a name Linnaean name first used in 1753 and comes from the Latin word 'crassus' meaning "thick" that refers to the thick plump leaves of many of the genus. The specific epithet meaning 4-angled comes from the arrangement of leaves (phyllotaxy) in four distinct ranks. This plant has long been in cultivation and its name credited to Linnaeus, the "father of taxonomy" himself. According to Hortus Kewensis Volume 1 published in 1789 this plant was introduced in 1714 by Cambridge Professor of Botany Richard Bradley and Encyclopaedia Londinensis Volume 5 published in 1810 also has this date of introduction though Gordon Rowley in his book, Crassula: A Growers Guide published in 2003 notes that Bradley introduced it in 1711 . There are at least 6 subspecies and cultivars that have been cultivated. It is commonly called the Miniature Pine Tree, Mini Pine Tree or just Pine Tree.  The information on this page is based on our research that has been conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in the nursery, in the nursery's garden, and in other gardens where it has been observed. We also incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that might aid others in growing  Crassula tetragona.