Crassula ovata
Jade Plant
Crassulaceae (Stonecrop Family)



 

Jade plant is a much-branched, thick-stemmed and fleshy-leaved glabrous perennial growing 1'-4' tall which has been cultivated as a house plant in the United States and Europe, often being planted outside in southern California, and sometimes escaping the bounds of these areas.  The main stems are thick and can grow 4"-6" in diameter, and the upper stems can be 2" in diameter, often tending to appear somewhat jointed or segmented. The leaves are thick and succulent, 1" to 1-1/2" long and about 3/4" wide, obovate either with a rounded tip or with a tiny apical point, and are cuneate to tapering at the base.  They cluster at the ends of stout stems, sometimes with 1 or 2 opposite pairs.  The leaves appear to have very minute whitish spots on them which examined under magnification turn out to be some kind of structures embedded deep within the leaf and not on its surface. The flowers are in ± flat-topped clusters on peduncles arising from the stem ends.  The peduncles and pedicels are striate and sometimes red-tinged.  The calyx is 5-lobed and cup-shaped with the lobes less than 1/16" long.  There are five white to pink lanceolate petals with inrolled margins near the tips that alternate with the five stamens, each of which has a versatile anther that is butterfly-shaped with two chambers that dehisce along the lateral edges.  The pistils are reddish-tinged on the interior side, with a broad superior ovary tapering to a narrow style and a tiny capitate stigma.  Jade plant is a winter-blooming plant and its beautiful clusters of star-shaped flowers usually are in evidence around Christmas.  It is a native of South Africa. One of its synonyms is Crassula argentea.

Click here for Lane name derivations: 1) Crassula 2) ovata.
Pronunciation: KRAS-yoo-la ar-JEN-tee-a.
Click here for Botanical Term Meanings.

 






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