Graptopetalum Species, Ghost Plant, Mother of Pearl Plant

Graptopetalum paraguayense

Family: Crassulaceae (krass-yoo-LAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Graptopetalum (grap-toh-PET-al-um) (Info)
Species: paraguayense (par-uh-gway-EN-see) (Info)
View this plant in a garden


Alpines and Rock Gardens

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade


Grown for foliage

Provides Winter Interest

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)


3-6 in. (7-15 cm)


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)

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)

Where to Grow:

Can be grown as an annual



Bloom Color:


White/Near White

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From leaf cuttings

Allow cut surface to callous over before planting

By simple layering

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Anniston, Alabama

Gadsden, Alabama

Lillian, Alabama

Loxley, Alabama

Mobile, Alabama

Wetumpka, Alabama

Phoenix, Arizona

Sierra Vista, Arizona

Brentwood, California

Carmichael, California

Davis, California

Exeter, California

Half Moon Bay, California

Hayward, California

Lodi, California

Murrieta, California

San Jose, California

San Leandro, California

Vista, California(9 reports)

Archer, Florida

Bartow, Florida

Fort Myers, Florida

Hobe Sound, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Jacksonville, Florida(2 reports)

Lake Mary, Florida

Lecanto, Florida

Milton, Florida

Orlando, Florida(2 reports)

Port Charlotte, Florida(2 reports)

Port Richey, Florida

Saint Augustine, Florida(2 reports)

Saint Petersburg, Florida

Tampa, Florida

Umatilla, Florida

West Palm Beach, Florida

Barnesville, Georgia

Griffin, Georgia

Hawkinsville, Georgia

Mcdonough, Georgia

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Mandeville, Louisiana

Metairie, Louisiana

Pollock, Louisiana

Zachary, Louisiana

Clinton, Mississippi

Terry, Mississippi

Las Vegas, Nevada

Elephant Butte, New Mexico

Las Cruces, New Mexico

Roswell, New Mexico

Elizabeth City, North Carolina(2 reports)

Fayetteville, North Carolina

Shelby, North Carolina

Gold Hill, Oregon

Columbia, South Carolina

Murrells Inlet, South Carolina

Prosperity, South Carolina

Arlington, Texas

Austin, Texas(4 reports)

Brazoria, Texas

Canyon Lake, Texas

Dallas, Texas

Edinburg, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

Harper, Texas

Houston, Texas(4 reports)

La Porte, Texas

League City, Texas

Mcallen, Texas

Medina, Texas

Mission, Texas

North Richland Hills, Texas

Pflugerville, Texas

Quinlan, Texas

Red Oak, Texas

San Angelo, Texas

San Antonio, Texas(4 reports)

Kalama, Washington

Dniprovka, Zaporiz'ka

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jan 24, 2015, poeciliopsis from Phoenix, AZ wrote:

Central Phoenix -- Graptopetalum paraguayense grows well in my garden, but doesn't like a lot of afternoon sun. A large patch died after removal of a shrub providing afternoon shade. My existing plants grow in filtered shade, some in a pot, some in the ground. The potted plant is with a Beaucarnea recurvata and is watered erratically and not often. The plant in the ground is watered every two weeks in summer and not in winter. This plant is frost-hardy and has survived hard freezes in my garden -- down into the low 20s.


On Dec 9, 2012, elnido from Kingstown, NC wrote:

I have a specimen of this that has been growing at historic home in Shelby NC possibly since 1920s. We have old photos of cascading rosettes from raised wooden planter box that it still grows in today. During a time when the home was empty and renovations resulted in paint chips and other debris falling on it, the planting dwindled, but tender loving care indoors over winter for the few stems that remained and attention to replanting any leaves that drop off, have restored it to its previous glory. Temperatures here range from teens in winter to nineties and occasional 100s in summer, though last winter was very mild. It is outdoors with southern exposure but evening shade. We have also had some very dry, drought conditions that it has tolerated. A wonderful plant! I just learned tha... read more


On Sep 24, 2012, natplant from Ravenel, SC wrote:

I've had this plant for over 12 years, in zone 8b Ravenel, SC. It is very hardy here, never goes dormant.

It is a delicate, brittle plant meaning that any sort of collision with a hand, foot, cat, etc. will break off leaves. No problem though, just scratch up some dirt, stick the leaf 1/2 way into the soil, pack down and voila!! New plant!!.

The only downside is that as the plant matures and gets longer, not taller, as it trails, it sheds its leaves and leaves a bare stem with just a few leaves at its end. No problem again, cut the stem and plant it.


On Sep 24, 2012, gbirdie from Jacksonville, FL wrote:

You have to love a plant that thrives on no attention. I've had my ghost plant for about 25 years in an elevated pot, in partial shade. It has taken temps in the low 20's with no protection, flowers profusely, and I have passed along dozens of offspring potted from this one mother plant. I love succulents, but this is one of my favorites.


On Feb 25, 2011, victorengel from Austin, TX wrote:

The 17 degree weather this winter didn't phase this plant -- either in the ground or in an elevated, unprotected pot.


On Jun 4, 2009, TheBigBlueFrog from Loxley, AL wrote:

I got this plant from my great aunt, who received it from my great-grandmother. My great-grandmother brought the plant with her from Demopolis, AL to Loxley, AL. My mother and grandmother also took cuttings from the plant, so it's been in our family for four generations.

I have this plant in brick planters on the south side of my house, in full sun, and it thrives there. It can be kept indoors for a short time, but will get 'leggy' without bright sunlight. My plants bloom every year, small star-shaped flowers, but they do not self-seed. Not even sure if this plant produces any seed. Almost every leaf that gets knocked loose from the mother plant will sprout, and the individual leaves break loose easily.

Seems to be one of the hardiest of succulents. When my ka... read more


On Apr 14, 2009, Psyguy10 from Fayetteville, NC (Zone 8a) wrote:

ahhhh, this is a wonderful plant in my experience, they are drought tolerant, heat and cold resistant and are all round easy to grow. i've had some survive down to 15 F with some protection (although i don't recommend it) they like some sun, but in the summer they do good with a little bit of shade... i water mine when the soil is dry, as for the potting mix they aren't picky at all; as long as it drains fairly well they're good to go! and they are easyyyyy to propagate just take a leaf off let it callous over for a day or two and put it in some sandy mix and keep damp... in a few weeks it'll have rooted. this is a great plant in my opinion. cheers


On Feb 15, 2009, peejay12 from Porthleven, Helston, Cornwall,
United Kingdom (Zone 9b) wrote:

This plant must be one of the hardiest of the Echeverioideae.
I live in Cornwall, U.K., (Zone 9b), where we had an exceptionally hard frost of -8C (21F). This plant was growing outside in well-drained soil and was completely unharmed.

The U.K. is very cloudy and wet, which reduces the hardiness
of plants considerably so I was extremely surprised at this.

Definitely a plant to try outside in the more northerly parts of the Pacific coast.


On Oct 24, 2008, BlissfulGarden from Baton Rouge, LA wrote:


Graptopetalum paraguayense, native to Mexico, has glaucous blue gray leaves tinged with lavender. Rosettes become rambling to form semi-prostrate groundcovers. White star-shaped flowers with charming reddish speckling. Sometimes occurs as a variegated form or cristate form. Quickly grows to fill up larger areas in rock gardens. Can be used for hanging baskets. Porous soil with adequate drainage. Bright light to full sun. Water thoroughly when soil is dry to the touch. Is frost tolerant, but best to give protection to prevent damage.


On May 7, 2008, angele wrote:

Bought a cutting from a local nursery. The cutting had 15 leaves on it. Removed the leaves and laid them on the ground in a shady spot, watering them only sporadically. After about a month I have 13 new baby plants. Photo added to PF.


On Nov 24, 2007, gray_53 from Mcdonough, GA wrote:

Got a cutting from my grandmother. If you look at the leaves, each one is about 137.5 degrees from the next largest one, the golden angle.


On May 15, 2005, spaceman_spiff from Saint Petersburg, FL (Zone 9b) wrote:

This plant loves the full sun here. I have one in the sun (see photos) and another larger plant on a shaded patio. The one on the patio does nicely in a raised planter, allowing the stems of the plant to cascade downward for a nice effect, but it seems to be more "scraggly" than the one in full sun. And the one in the shade hasn't bloomed, while the one in the sun has. John


On Oct 10, 2003, BUFFY690 from Prosperity, SC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I have quite a few of these plants growing is various places in containers in my garden I just leave them out all the time and it seems that the outher leaves turn brown and curl up over the center leaves in the winter and in the spring the dried leaved fall off and it just keeps on growing. I am going to take in the larger one this year to see if I can get some size on it.


On Apr 4, 2001, Ehowell from Weyburn, SK wrote:

The succulent leaves of this plant are silvery green They alternate along the stems and terminate in rosettes. A carefree plant that propagates easily from a single leaf.