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Cobweb Hens And Chicks

Category:

You’ve likely never seen anything like this – the name is well deserved, as the small balls of succulent leaves are covered in fine silver hairs, truly resembling a network of cobwebs between each leaf and between the rosettes; a most unusual plant

Characteristics

Species:
arachnoideum
Other Species Names:
House Leek
Average Landscape Height:
3 inches (8 inches with the flowers)
Average Landscape Width:
12 inches
Genus:
Sempervivum
Cultivar:
Cobweb
Branching:
herbaceous
Plant Form:
over mound
Canopy:
closed
Density:
dense
Growth Rate:
medium
Pruning:
should not need pruning
Spacing:
10 inches
Flower Color:
pink
Flower Form:
star
Flower Period:
in mid summer
Summer Foliage Color:
sea green
Maximum Light:
full sun
Minimum Light:
full sun
Maximum Moisture:
average
Minimum Moisture:
dry
Pollution Tolerance:
high

Ornamental Features

Cobweb Hens And Chicks is primarily valued in the garden for its distinctive form, with the flower stalks towering over the foliage. It features unusual clusters of pink star-shaped flowers with dark red bracts rising above the foliage in mid summer. Its attractive tomentose pointy leaves emerge silver in spring, turning bluish-green in color with hints of silver throughout the season.

Landscape Attributes

Cobweb Hens And Chicks is a dense herbaceous perennial with tall flower stalks held atop a low mound of foliage. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.

Planting & Growing

Cobweb Hens And Chicks will grow to be only 3 inches tall at maturity extending to 8 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 10 inches apart. Its foliage tends to remain low and dense right to the ground. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 20 years. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!

This plant should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in sandy soils, and is able to handle environmental salt. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Cobweb Hens And Chicks is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers and foliage against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

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