HouseplantsDecorative

What Are the Most Common Types of Jade Plants?

Jade plant

Jade plants are not just green, leafy succulents but remarkable plants with unique beauty and long-lasting lifespans.

You may think that all jade plants are alike, but there are many types that you may not know about.

In this article, you will discover the most common types of jade plants and why they are worth adding to your plant collection.

What Are Jade Plants?

Jade plants are known for their thick, fleshy, and glossy green leaves that store water.

They are low-maintenance, can grow up to 3 feet (90 cm) tall, and can live for several decades.

The plants require well-draining soil, bright and indirect sunlight, and infrequent watering, as they are susceptible to root rot.

They are ideal for indoor gardening and can add a touch of natural beauty to any room.

Some reasons why jade plants are popular as houseplants are the following:

  • Jade plants are easy to care for. They don’t need much water, fertilizer, or pruning.
  • Jade plants are adaptable. They can tolerate different light and temperature conditions.
  • Jade plants are lucky. They symbolize wealth, prosperity, and good fortune in many cultures.

But not all jade plants are the same. In fact, there are over 1,400 species of jade plants in the genus Crassula.

In the next section, we will introduce you to the most common types of jade plants and how to identify and care for them.

Jade Plants Are Perfect for Bonsai Lovers

Did you know that jade plants can live very long and grow into small trees or shrubs? Some jade plants have been passed down from generation to generation and are over 100 years old. They also have thick, woody stems that resemble tiny tree trunks and can grow up to 5 feet (1.5 m) tall indoors.

Common Types of Jade Plants

Now that you understand what jade plants are and their characteristics let’s take a closer look at the most common types of jade plants you can find.

Type #1: Crassula ovata

Crassula ovata
Source: Wikimedia

Crassula ovata is the classic jade plant.

It has thick, green leaves, woody stems, and white or pink flowers.

It has many varieties, such as:

  • Hummel’s Sunset‘: Yellow-green leaves with red tips.
  • Gollum‘: Tubular leaves that curl inward.
  • Hobbit‘: Flatter and less curled leaves than ‘Gollum.’
  • Variegata‘: Green leaves with creamy-white stripes.

To care for Crassula ovata, follow these tips:

  • Light: Give it direct and bright indirect light. If indoors, place it near a south-facing window. Avoid too much sun in the afternoon.
  • Water: Water it well when the soil is dry. Don’t overwater or underwater it.
  • Soil: Use well-draining soil for cacti or succulents. Mix potting soil and coarse sand or perlite. The soil should be neutral to slightly acidic.
  • Fertilizer: Feed it once or twice in spring and summer with diluted fertilizer. Don’t fertilize in fall and winter.
  • Temperature: Keep it warm between 65°F and 86°F (18°C and 30°C). Protect it from frost or freezing temperatures. If indoors, avoid drafts or heating vents.
  • Humidity: It can handle different humidity levels but is not too moist. Increase the air circulation with a fan or window.
  • Pruning: Trim it to keep its size and shape. Remove any dead or diseased parts. Pruning also promotes new growth and branching.
  • Propagation: You can propagate it from stem cuttings, leaf cuttings, or seeds. Let them dry for a few days until a callus forms. Then plant them in moist soil and keep them warm until they root or sprout.

Type #2: Crassula arborescens

Crassula arborescens
Source: Dr. Alexey Yakovlev

Crassula arborescens is another type of jade plant with a different look.

It has flat, round leaves that are grayish-green with reddish edges.

It also has woody stems that can grow up to 5 feet (1.5 m) tall.

In the spring or summer, it can produce white or pink flowers that attract bees and butterflies.

Some of the varieties of Crassula arborescens are:

  • Blue Bird‘ features blue-green leaves with red margins and pink flowers.
  • Silver Dollar‘ has silvery-gray leaves with red margins and white flowers.
  • Undulatifolia‘ has wavy leaves with red margins and white flowers.

To grow and maintain Crassula arborescens, you must provide the following conditions:

  • Light: Crassula arborescens need bright indirect or filtered light. It can handle some direct sun for a few hours, but not too much, or it may get sunburned. If grown indoors, place it near an east-facing window.
  • Water: Crassula arborescens need moderate water but can survive drought. Water it well when the soil is dry, but don’t overwater or underwater it. Too much water can cause root rot or fungal diseases.
  • Soil: Crassula arborescens needs well-draining sandy, rocky, or gritty soil. The soil should be neutral to slightly acidic but not too extreme. You can use a potting mix for cacti or succulents or make your own by mixing potting soil and perlite.
  • Fertilizer: Crassula arborescens does not need much fertilizer, but you can feed it once or twice in spring and summer with diluted fertilizer. Don’t fertilize in fall and winter.
  • Temperature: Crassula arborescens prefers warm temperatures between 65°F and 75°F (18°C and 24°C). It can tolerate some cold, but not frost or freezing temperatures. If grown outdoors, bring it indoors when the temperature drops below 50°F (10°C). If grown indoors, avoid drafts or heating vents.
  • Humidity: Crassula arborescens can handle different humidity levels but not too moist. Increase the air circulation with a fan or window. Too much humidity can cause fungal diseases or pests.
  • Pruning: Crassula arborescens does not need much pruning, but you can trim it to keep its size and shape. Pruning also promotes new growth and branching. Remove any dead or diseased parts with clean scissors or shears.
  • Propagation: You can propagate Crassula arborescens from stem cuttings, leaf cuttings, or seeds. Let them dry for a few days until a callus forms. Then plant them in moist soil and keep them warm until they root or sprout.

Type #3: Portulacaria afra

Portulacaria afra
Source: Wikimedia

Portulacaria afra is another type of jade plant with a different look.

It has small, succulent leaves that are teardrop-shaped and reddish-brown stems.

It also has pink flowers that appear in late spring or early summer. 

Some of the varieties of Portulacaria afra are:

  • Variegata’: Features green leaves with creamy-white edges.
  • Aurea‘: Has yellow-green leaves and yellow stems.
  • Medio-picta‘: This variety has green leaves with yellow centers.

To grow and maintain Portulacaria afra, you need to provide the following conditions:

  • Light: Portulacaria afra needs bright indirect, or filtered light. It can handle some direct sun for a few hours, but not too much, or it may get sunburned. If grown indoors, place it near an east-facing window,
  • Water: Portulacaria afra needs moderate water but can survive drought. Water it well when the soil is dry, but don’t overwater or underwater it. Too much water can cause root rot or fungal diseases.
  • Soil: Portulacaria afra needs well-draining sandy, rocky, or gritty soil. The soil should be slightly acidic (5.6 to 6.5). You can use a potting mix for cacti or succulents or make your own by mixing potting soil and perlite.
  • Fertilizer: Portulacaria afra does not need much fertilizer, but you can feed it once or twice in spring and summer with diluted fertilizer. Don’t fertilize in fall and winter.
  • Temperature: Portulacaria afra prefers warm temperatures between 65°F and 86°F (18°C and 30°C). It can tolerate some cold, but not frost or freezing temperatures. If grown outdoors, bring it indoors when the temperature drops below 50°F (10°C). If grown indoors, avoid drafts or heating vents.
  • Humidity: Portulacaria afra can handle different humidity levels but not too moist. Too much humidity can cause fungal diseases or pests. Increase the air circulation with a fan or window.
  • Pruning: Portulacaria afra does not need much pruning, but you can trim it to keep its size and shape. Pruning also promotes new growth and branching. Remove any dead or diseased parts with clean scissors or shears.
  • Propagation: You can propagate Portulacaria afra from stem cuttings, leaf cuttings, or seeds. Let them dry for a few days until a callus forms. Then plant them in moist soil and keep them warm until they root or sprout.

Conclusion

If you want a plant that requires little effort but brings years of enjoyment and potential prosperity, then the jade plant is for you.

Plus, you never know; it might even bring you good luck.

So get yourself a jade plant, and let the good times grow!

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