Sedum kamtschaticum, better known as the Russian stonecrop sedum, phedimus kamtschaticus , russian sedum, or just sedum kamtschatka, is a low-growing ground cover that blooms with tiny, fuchsia-colored flowers from mid-summer to mid-fall.
The Russian stonecrop sedum plant can be hardy in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3 through 9 and prefers full sun and dry soil conditions in the summertime with light watering during the rest of the year to thrive in most areas throughout the United States.
Sturdy and highly adaptable, Sedum kamtschaticum thrives in many different climates throughout the United States. This variety of stonecrop sedum makes an excellent ground cover because of its ability to thrive in high-traffic areas, even in dry conditions, while requiring little to no maintenance.
Sedum kamtschaticum (Russian Stonecrop Sedum) prefers moist, shady areas with good drainage, though it can tolerate sun in the summer as long as it’s not too hot and there’s plenty of water available.
It grows best in rich soil that’s high in organic matter but will grow fine in regular garden soil with some compost added to it to improve drainage.
Origin and distribution
Native to Russia, Siberia, and North Korea, Sedum kamtschaticum is also known as phedimus kamtschaticus or Russian stonecrop. It can grow in a variety of conditions. This plant has become popular among gardeners because it requires little maintenance.
In fact, sedum kamtschatka prefers well-drained soil that is low in nutrients but rich in organic matter. The plant will wither if it receives too much water or fertilizer, so you should avoid overwatering and overfeeding your plants with chemical additives.
As for sunlight requirements, you’ll want to place your Russian stonecrop where it will receive bright but indirect light from an eastern window.
Sedum kamtschaticum propagation
Starting a new plant is simple with new gardening tools and supplies. You can use a traditional greenhouse propagation or use one of these other methods: layered, divided, or cuttings.
Russian stonecrop sedum needs to be propagated via cuttings to get started. Take semi-ripe cuts, 15 cm in length from mature plants. Cut just above an upward-pointing leaf so that it has 1–2 nodes on each cutting. Each node can produce roots for a new plant.
Keep your cuttings moist and warm until they root. If you are growing indoors, place them under lights in a well-lit area at around 20°C. After 3 weeks check to see if they have rooted by gently tugging on them, if they come out easily then they are ready to transplant into pots or grow bags. If not, leave them another week before checking again.
Sedum kamtschaticum care information
Phedimus kamtschaticus, also known as Sedum kamtschaticum, is a low-growing perennial that provides excellent ground cover. This dwarf perennial grows no more than 4 inches tall with yellow flowers blooming in July and August. Phedimus kamtschaticus does well in USDA zones 3 to 9, preferring full sun to partial shade and well-drained soil.
Sedum kamtschaticum prefers full sun to part shade. Russian stonecrop sedum grows best in full sun, but it can tolerate light shade. In partial shade, it will grow and bloom less intensely.
Try to plant it where its flowers will be protected from harsh afternoon sun for at least part of each day, however. If your area experiences hot afternoons, you may need to move your plants so they can get more direct morning light.
Soil is most important when growing your Russian sedum. Make sure to thoroughly mix in compost and peat moss with any potting soil you use. In addition, add slow-release fertilizer to give your plant a boost; keep in mind that sedums do best in slightly acidic soils.
Potted plants also benefit from an inch of crushed gravel at their roots for drainage. When planting your stonecrop sedum, make sure not to bury it deeper than its leaves, as it needs ample light exposure to grow properly.
This plant doesn’t require a lot of water. During its first year, Sedum kamtschaticum should be watered only enough to keep it from wilting during hot spells. In subsequent years, water regularly through summer, about once a week if rain is scarce. Add some gravel to your pot so that excess water can drain out and prevent root rot.
When dormant in winter, stop watering completely until new growth emerges. If you live in an area with mild winters, you can leave it outside; otherwise, bring it inside before frost arrives.
Generally, you should use a slow-release fertilizer once every month. Slow-release fertilizers take a while to release nutrients into your soil and can last anywhere from one to three months after they’re applied.
Using these products will give your plants a steady stream of nutrients, which keeps them growing strong. Slow-release fertilizers are ideal for sedums, especially Russian stonecrop sedum because they like well-fertilized soil.
To ensure that your plant stays healthy and green, be sure to fertilize occasionally with a general-purpose fertilizer.
When growing in containers, Russian stonecrop requires a cooler location that is between 50 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’re growing it outdoors, make sure to protect it from direct sunlight and strong winds to keep it from drying out.
Be sure to water it regularly since it will dry out quickly if left unwatered for long periods of time.
Sedum kamtschaticum prefers a cool, humid environment. If you don’t have access to constant humidity in your home, a pebble tray or watering can help keep moisture levels consistent. Remember that sitting water can lead to mold and disease, so be sure to empty and dry pebble trays daily.
The ideal humidity range for your Sedum kamtschaticum is between 40 and 70 percent. If your home falls outside of that range, you can use a humidifier or dehumidifier to help keep your plant healthy.
A hygrometer will help you monitor humidity levels in your home. You can also purchase an inexpensive hygrometer at most garden stores.
After initially planting Russian stonecrop, you won’t need to do much pruning—only remove any stems that are damaged or diseased. This plant is susceptible to a handful of fungal diseases and insect pests, including scale, spider mites, rust fungus, and leaf miners.
However, if you stick to your watering routine and monitor your plant for signs of infestation and disease, you shouldn’t have too many problems with it. If you notice any issues, be sure to treat them immediately so they don’t spread throughout your garden.
The best way to prevent future issues is by choosing resistant varieties and taking steps to prevent other plants from being infected by beneficial insects such as ladybugs and lacewings.
When to repot
If your sedum kamtschaticum has outgrown its current container, it’s time to repot. You can find out if your plant is ready for a larger pot by checking the root ball—if you can fit more than one finger inside, then it’s time to move on up.
To repot, simply remove as much soil from around your plant as possible and replace it with fresh soil in a larger pot. Water thoroughly and place back in bright sunlight. Your sedum should be good to go!
Winter rest is a natural phenomenon for perennial plants such as Russian stonecrop sedum. When a plant has finished blooming and its leaves have fallen, it will begin to go dormant; this is nature’s way of allowing it to take time off from growth and energy production.
If left in place during winter dormancy, Russian stonecrop sedum will require no extra maintenance besides occasional watering, which can be achieved by tilling lightly around plants or by mulching them with straw or grass clippings.
Sedum kamtschaticum flower & fragrance
White and pink clusters of flowers bloom in early summer, followed by attractive red or yellow berries in fall. A creeping plant with delicate green and white variegated leaves, Russian stonecrop sedum has multiple uses around your yard.
The showy blooms of sedum kamtschaticum are a delightful addition to flowerbeds and containers, while its compact growth habit makes it an excellent ground cover.
The Russian sedum is a very fast-growing plant that propagates quickly by dropping pieces of leaves and stems, causing a new plant to grow from each one. The root system is shallow and can easily be severed by moving it or even just having it sit in water for an extended period of time.
It’s important to make sure you don’t let them dry out because they tend to fall over if they are not kept wet.
Sedum kamtschaticum, also known as Russian stonecrop sedum, is not toxic to pets or humans. Although it is not a hardy plant, most owners will find that once established, it will grow in low light conditions and can thrive with little to no care.
Because of its adaptability and tolerance for neglect, pet owners may find themselves overwhelmed with excess plants if they are not careful.
USDA hardiness zones
Sedum kamtschaticum thrives in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 8. It can be grown outdoors year-round in warmer climates, but it may require some protection during colder months. If you live in a colder climate, try growing it indoors or under a glass cloche.
Pests and diseases
Growing succulents in your garden is a unique experience. In addition to caring for them in ways similar to regular garden plants, you’ll also have to deal with pests and diseases that may be specific to succulents.
One of these diseases affects all sedums, both cultivated and wild. Called pestalotiopsis disease, it’s caused by a fungus called pestalotiopsis and can cause leaf yellowing, rotting stems, and other problems that can significantly reduce plant health.
You can help prevent infection by planting only healthy, pest-free plants. And if you notice any signs of infection, isolate affected plants immediately and remove them from your garden as soon as possible.
Though many of us don’t consider succulents to be hardy plants, it is still worth mentioning that Sedum kamtschaticum can tolerate as much as five hours of freezing temperatures per year. If you are looking for an incredibly versatile plant that can tolerate low light levels, irregular watering schedules, and a variety of different soil types, you should try growing Sedum kamtschaticum in your home.