Category: Tropicals and Tender Perennials Cactus and Succulents
Height: 12-18 in. (30-45 cm)
Spacing: 18-24 in. (45-60 cm)
Hardiness: 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) USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 °C (30 °F) USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 °C (35 °F) USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 °C (40 °F)
Propagation Methods: From leaf cuttings From woody stem cuttings From softwood cuttings From semi-hardwood cuttings From hardwood cuttings Allow cut surface to callous over before planting From seed; sow indoors before last frost
On May 23, 2013, Centaurea from Roanoke, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:
Overall positive, because I like the weirdness of this plant. I've had mine several years and last year it developed some sort of fungus that strangled the main stems. There were three and as I watched them die one by one I decided to take cuttings from the top to try to save some. Those are doing great and are now well rooted. If I have to repeat this cycle it may be worth it, but for now I'm growing it in a VERY well draining medium and I'm looking into non-toxic things to give it that might prevent another killer issue.
I was just looking around the internet and am glad to find out what this curious looking plant is called.
I had been diagnosed with cancer in October 2010 and took a branch off a plant that was growing outside my apartment building here in Pasadena. I planted it in a pot as a way of promising myself that I would survive this crises in my life.
Now more than a year and a half later both plant and I are doing fine.
On Feb 8, 2012, morrigan from Craryville, NY wrote:
I just received a nice specimen, but it came by mail with no "hot hands" inside the box!! Is it possible it will die now? Our temps here today are around 30F; it was packed inside the box with tissue paper, and lots of plastic pillow and bubble wrap. It was pretty cold when we got it in (about 30 min to an hour after delivery - stupid postperson did not bring it to the door!). If anyone can advise, I'd really appreciate it - email at email@example.com. Thanks!
- Very easy to grow: i have not seen any disease over 10 years. It grows fast to a huge and thick leaved bonsai-like mini-tree.
- Very frost sensitive: the slightest frost kills it.(-1/-2) It will loose rigidity in a few hours after defreezing and does not recover. In winter i place it inside.
- To much rain will stop the growth and make the foliage less thick. The plant has to recover, the soil must get dry. In rainy season i cover the plant with foil
- Needs light when staying inside. In winter time some of the leaves wrinkle and get brown, then fall off because of lack of light and inhouse-climate.
- I do not agree with calling this a slow grower. The plants i have grow about 10cm in height each year, and in volume they double each year. In 5 years they can get 40cm tall by 60cm wide.
The one i have for 9 years is 90cm high and 140cm wide. Weight about 80kg, 150kg including soil and tub. See the pictures i posted elsewhere.
- Treatment: outside as long as no frost is foreseen. Keep in a spatious container that matches the width of the plant. The more sun it gets the better. Water regularly in the warm season and dont be shy with fertiliser. (if you want it to grow)
I never prune it, it developes an harmonious branche system by itself. At freezing to -1 degrees: cover it with a thick blanket. At regular freezing: inside at a cool and light spot. Moisture ver sparsely. I use a sprayer to moisture the top of the soil to prevent it from becoming crusty, and to keep the moss and ferns alive (which i like)
- I have no negative experience with keeping it in an oversized container. My plants do better when over-potted. In my opinion it also fits the massiveness of the plant (my largest specimen has 2 main trunks 20cm in diameter. I keep it in an 70cm wide oakewood tub. See pictures: http://pics.davesgarden.com/pics/2011/10/24/zwerfkei/08ae6c.... )
I have two of these living together in a pot here in Berlin. I bought them as very small trees in 2002 in Germany and it is about 25-30 cm tall now 9 years later. Basically it has been an indoor plant but I now have a big terrace and it is spending time outdoors more. I am curious to see if it grows better. I have only repotted it once.... some of the branches have started to hang low, and i was wondering if i should trim them....?
On Jan 17, 2011, palmbob from Tarzana, CA (Zone 9b) wrote:
I have only grown this plant outdoors (live in Southern California) so I have little to add about indoor life, or life where it gets below freezing. It is one of the easiest of all the succulents to grow, though all the Crassula ovatas are similarly easy. This one tends to be a bit slower than the non-monstrose foms, and takes a long time to become a huge shrub... mine rarely make it over 5' tall without limbs sagging or breaking off. It does best in all day sun here... if grown in too much shade trunks and branches are too weak to support as much growth, and it eventually falls over and just wilts to the ground, until pruned heavily... then it recovers.
This plant, like all the C ovatas, has tremendous latitude when it comes to watering (remember, this is outdoors)... I water mine all summer, because those that don't get any water (we get over 100F frequently here) wilt and look a bit wrinkled. Lack of water when it's cool, but in sunlight, will result in nice reddish outlines along the leaf margins... but then winter rains take over and green them up again.
Outdoors I would characterize this as a winter grower, and that is when it gets most of its natural water here (never ever seen one rot in the ground from excess rain, even during periods of marked cold (high 20s to low 30sF) for weeks on end... but I suppose it could happen). So these 'expect' less water in summers, but don't seem to mind it... and obviously respond to water. So literally, this is an 'opportunistic' grower, growing when it has water to grow with.
Often confused with Crassula ovata 'Hobbit', an older and less monstrose form with leaves that look somewhat folded, luck Bunny ears. But 'Hobbit's do not have the 'suction cup' tips typical of some of 'Gollum's's leaves, and leaves are somewhat larger, and tend to be somewhat paler. Plants side by side are easy to tell apart. C 'Hobbit' is sort of a half way form between normal Crassula ovatas and 'Gollums'.
On Jan 17, 2011, Plantapotamus from Huntsville, AL wrote:
Here's a super easy indoor bonsai plant. Loves a lot of light but will do well in very low light as long as its kept on the dry side.
Don't water the leaves in a low light environment or during the winter. Personally, I never water them, except if they appear very dusty.
This plant will not stand to freeze, and will often linger a slow death if let to freeze: a plant with freeze damage is real prone to rot.
The bottom leaves on the plant will shrivel or prune a little when it's really thirsty. In extreme thirst bottom leaves will turn yellow and die.
Keep it dry during the winter-- as will many tropicals and cacti -- winter= dry season. this means fewer waterings and less water too.
This plant doesn't mind being potbound too much at all-- of course this slows growth.
Easy from cutting! Just let them scab for 3 days to a week, any piece of stem with a few leaves will work.
One of the easiest of all houseplants I've come across.
Crassula argentea cv. 'Gollum' is considered to be a monstrose form of the popular jade plant (Crassula argentea). The leaves, unlike the flattened leaves of regular Jade, form odd tubular, lime green "fingers". The tip of the leaf is flared, but depressed in the center and often a brilliant, translucent red. Excellent as patio plant or landscape plant. With its red-tipped fingers atop a thick, gnarly trunk "Gollum" is also a great bonsai subject. The jade plant is a popular subject for bonsai training due to the inherent gnarly character of the thickened trunk and the ease with which it can be pruned and trained. In the case of "Gollum", the red-tipped "fingers" are an added plus to create an interesting bonsai plant. Porous soil with adequate drainage. Bright light to full sun. Water thoroughly when soil is dry to the touch. Protect from frost.
On Sep 7, 2008, pford1854 from Marion, AR (Zone 7b) wrote:
from Plant Label:
Finger Jade var. Gollum
Native to South Africa. Considered to be a monstrose form of the jade plant. White star shapped flowers in Winter. Porous soil with adequate drainage. Bright light to full sun. Protect from frost. Provide bright light/sun; hardy to 36F; to 4' tall. Water thoroughly when soil is dry.
Slow grower, but loves to be ignored and makes an interesting addition to a succulent collection. Don't over-pot, or the dirt can stagnate and the roots will rot. Loves shallow pots and lots of sun, but mushes if it gets too cold or is overwatered. Offsets freely - I started with a small plant and now have 4 or 5 growing happily together.
On Feb 9, 2007, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:
Unusual Crassula to say the least. I have had mine for a few years now always outdoors in a shallow clay pot. That was one mistake since in our dry summers they tend to need frequent watering. Also,mine is never the green as the ones in the photos.Mine is reddish tinged with light green in full sun. Slow growers, i once saw a 24" plant for $100 at a succulent show.It did have that Bonsai small tree form.
This Januarys great California freeze brought temps down to 30F more or less for about a week. So far that has resulted in a few killed branches but otherwise it looks good. It's about 16" X16" and looks to be a long term plant.
On Jun 28, 2004, jhyshark from Scottville, MI (Zone 4b) wrote:
I just love the way this looks in my rock garden, but I have to bring it inside in the winter. It didn't do well inside this year, but I found some more babies for sale at Wal-Mart of all places, so they are now in the garden for this summer.
On Nov 10, 2002, tchessie from Elk Grove, CA wrote:
I believe this is this plant I have as well. It propogates very easily- often leaves fallen/broken off will self-sow at the base. This plant does flower- mine has set buds for the first time. They appear small and white in clusters, with pink stamen. I have a mature plant (about 7 years old) and it has been outside since early spring in a spot that gets morning sun. (zone 8-9)
On Jul 12, 2001, Briggs from Gillett, PA (Zone 5a) wrote:
It is an erect, sparingly branched succulent. The trumpet shaped leaves are 4-ranked (decussate), smooth and shiny, deep green in color with very light spotting. No known flowers at this time. Picture to follow at a later time.
This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:
, Florala, Alabama Phoenix, Arizona (3 reports) Marion, Arkansas Arroyo Grande, California Brea, California Castro Valley, California Clayton, California Coalinga, California Concord, California Hayward, California La Presa, California Los Angeles, California Manhattan Beach, California Mission Viejo, California Norwalk, California Palm Springs, California Paradise, California Pasadena, California Pleasant Hill, California Reseda, California Santee, California Tulare, California , Connecticut Broadview-pompano Park, Florida Haverhill, Florida Jacksonville, Florida Kissimmee, Florida Lake City, Florida Lutz, Florida South Venice, Florida Tampa, Florida Thomasville, Georgia De Motte, Indiana Baton Rouge, Louisiana (2 reports) Metairie, Louisiana Clinton, Mississippi Picayune, Mississippi Cleveland, Ohio Duncan, Oklahoma Altoona, Pennsylvania Austin, Texas Barton Creek, Texas Bedford, Texas Eagle Mountain, Texas Houston, Texas Lockhart, Texas Redwood, Texas Spring Branch, Texas Seattle, Washington