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Sedum telphinum 'Autumn Joy' (stonecrop)

Sedum telphinum 'Autumn Joy'

stonecrop

(syn. Herbstfreude)

Bold clusters of closely packed, rosy pink flowers appear in late summer, age to a salmon bronze and finish with a deep coppery red in fall. An easy-to-grow plant that not only tolerates drought, but seems to thrive in it. Introduced by Georg Arends of Germany. A top 10 perennial for many years. This brilliant display of color is sure to urge the butterflies to stop and visit.

SIZE
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Height

2-3 Feet

Spread

2 Feet

Spacing

18 Inches

Bloom Color

Pink

USDA Hardiness Zone 3-9

stonecrop Interesting Notes

Fall brings a new assortment of perennial plants into bloom in the garden, and of these, few are more dependable and indestructible than Autumn Joy Sedum.

While it is a bulletproof survivor in the garden, it is not the least bit invasive or prone to crowd out its neighbors. Sedums are a member of the stonecrop family which is uniquely adapted to survive in shallow, dry soils.

Autumn Joy grows up to 18 inches tall from a dense crown of shoots that emerge in early spring and look like a nest of crowded fledglings each stretching their neck to get the next worm. The stems are thick and strong and hold aloft the considerable weight of the 3-inch long, fleshy, gray-green leaves and the 4- to 6-inch wide cluster of flowers that appear in late summer.

The flowers, as they first begin to appear in mid summer, give the impression of a head of silvery green broccoli. Opening flower buds produce a mass of half-inch, five-petaled blooms in the shape of a sharp-pointed star. The flowers start out light pink and change to a cherry red by the time they are in full bloom. This floral display is a progressive event with the plants blooming for about eight weeks. With such an extended blooming period, they are a favorite with butterflies.

But once blooms are over, don’t be in a hurry to remove the tops of the plants. The strong stems hold the spent flower heads aloft all winter long and create a pleasing mass of natural dried flower heads. In snowy climates these flower stems create a pleasing effect all winter long as small roofs of snow accumulate on the head. - Gerald Klingaman, retired, Extension Horticulturist - Ornamentals, University of Arkansas

Sedum telphinum 'Autumn Joy' Growing and Maintenance Tips

S. 'Autumn Joy' prefers average to dry, well-drained soil in full sun. Intolerant of wet soils. Propagate by seed and cuttings, although division seems to be the easiest for most. Excellent as a perennial border, rock gardens, or in mass plantings.

Good Substitutions

stonecrop Sedum 'Autumn Fire'

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Sun
Full Sun
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Pollinator-friendly
Pollinator-friendly
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant
Cut Flower
Cut Flower

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Well-Drained
Dry
Average
Plug Type
Horticultural Plug
Season of Interest (Flowering)
Late Summer
Fall
Green Infrastructure
Green Roof
Propagation Type
Vegetative