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Products > Cotyledon pendens
Cotyledon pendens - Cliff Cotyledon
Image of Cotyledon pendens
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Crassulaceae (Stonecrops)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Orange Red
Bloomtime: Summer
Height: <1 foot
Width: 1-2 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Summer Dry: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 25-30 F
Cotyledon pendens (Cliff Cotyledon) A much branched, relatively fast growing dense succulent shrublet with pendent branches that forms a dense mat 2 feet wide or hangs down in a solid cover curtain-like over a pot or wall this same distance. The fresh new stems are soft, slightly hairy and a whitish-green color but becoming glabrous with age. Thick succulent elliptically shaped pale green oppositely arranged leaves are crowded along the slender stems and initially are covered with a white waxy bloom. The leaves have a web shaped leaf base and apiculate tip and are attractively marked by reddish leaf margins when grown in full sun. In mid-summer at branch tips in a pendent 4 inch long slender stemmed white colored thyrse inflorescence are produced two to four (sometimes singly) bell shaped nearly 2 inch long orange-red flowers with spreading petal lobes and protruding yellow stamens. Plant in full to part sun in a well-drained soil and water occasionally to infrequently. It has proven hardy to at least a light frost and suitable for outdoor cultivation in coastal and southern California, but protection may be required if temperatures dip much below freezing. This attractive succulent makes a great hanging basket or potted plant subject or planted as a groundcover growing over a wall. Cotyledon pendens has a very limited natural distribution along south facing (away from the sun) cliff faces of the Bashe River from 1,000 to 1,300 feet in elevation in the summer rainfall Eastern Cape of South Africa, where it can be found anchored in crevices with the stems forming solid drooping mats. This species was described in 2003 by Kirstenbosch Botanic Garden botanist Ernst van Jaarsveld who found the plants while studying cliff-dwelling succulent in the area in 2001. The first plants were retrieved to be grown on at Kirstenbosch by throwing rocks at plants to knock down stems. The name for the genus originated from the Greek word 'kotyledon' or 'kotyle' meaning "cupped", "hollowed" or "a cavity" but the reason it is used for this genus has to do with the original inclusion of the round cup-leafed Pennywort (Umbilicus rupestris) in the genus. The specific epithet refers to this plants pendent growth habit. 

This information about Cotyledon pendens displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.