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Piggyback Plant, Pickaback Plant, Youth on Age, Mother-of-thousands, Thousand Mothers

Tolmiea menziesii

Family: Saxifragaceae (saks-ih-frag-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Tolmiea (TOL-mee-uh) (Info)
Species: menziesii (menz-ESS-ee-eye) (Info)



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

This plant is suitable for growing indoors


12-18 in. (30-45 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Partial to Full Shade



Bloom Color:

Maroon (Purple-Brown)

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From leaf cuttings

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Jones, Alabama

Chicago, Illinois

Ewing, Kentucky

Cumberland, Maryland

Canton, Mississippi

Neptune, New Jersey

Newfoundland, New Jersey

Brooklyn, New York

Hickory, North Carolina

Portland, Oregon

Salem, Oregon

Brady, Washington

Bremerton, Washington

Kalama, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Aug 1, 2010, quintal0503 from Montrose, PA wrote:

I acquired this plant by accident 2 years ago. A local farmer's market mislabeled the tiny plant as a hollyhock. It turned out to be a piggyback. The flowers were sparse and unremarkable, but the plant is thriving in my yard, which is a Zone 4B.


On Jul 8, 2003, frogsrus from San Diego, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

This is my first successful pig in 30 years of trying. It is not fond of our dry hot weather in San Diego. Even indirect sunlight seems to annoy it so it is in one of my precious always shaded areas.


On Jan 5, 2003, mystic from Ewing, KY (Zone 6a) wrote:

I grew this as a houseplant years ago, 2 years ago somebody gave me a start and told me to plant it outside I never figured it would survive our winters but its has come back the last 2 years. Makes a good groundcover in shady areas, it will not tolerate sun. I am in zone 6A so it is hardy in zone 6.


On Aug 31, 2001, jody from MD &, VA (Zone 7b) wrote:

Found in the wild spreading freely on the floor of coniferous woodland. It is widely grown as a houseplant but makes an effective groundcover under shrubs and trees when it is protected from strong sun.
Hairy leaves lobed and toothed. Spires of small slightly fragran purplish brown flowers.