Cotyledon Species, Pig's Ear, Round-Leafed Navel Wort

Cotyledon orbiculata

Family: Crassulaceae (krass-yoo-LAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Cotyledon (kot-EE-lee-don) (Info)
Species: orbiculata (or-bee-kul-AY-tuh) (Info)
Synonym:Cotyledon orbiculata var. hinrichseniana
Synonym:Cotyledon orbiculata subsp. orbiculata
Synonym:Cotyledon orbiculata var. oophylla
Synonym:Cotyledon ungulata
Synonym:Adromischus mucronatus



Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade


Grown for foliage



Foliage Color:




4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


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


All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Winter

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:

Allow cut surface to callous over before planting

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed


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

Phoenix, Arizona

Brentwood, California

Calistoga, California

Carlsbad, California

Clayton, California

El Macero, California

Fairfield, California

Lodi, California

Pleasant Hill, California

Ramona, California

Reseda, California

Richmond, California

San Jose, California

San Leandro, California

Spring Valley, California

Thousand Oaks, California

Vista, California(9 reports)

Woodcrest, California

South Bend, Indiana

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 22, 2009, crazymary from Lodi, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

It is hard in my zone to find succulents other than echeveria or sedum to survive the winters. However, this plant has survived frost, uncovered in a pot for two years without damage. I put in in the ground this year. We will see. The orange and yellow flowers seem to last quite a while as well. Love it.


On Jul 24, 2008, Joan from Belfield, ND (Zone 4a) wrote:

Additional synonyms: Cotyledon orbiculata var. rotundifolia, Cotyledon elata, Cotyledon orbiculata var. engleri, Cotyledon undulata var. mucronata, Cotyledon decussata, Cotyledon flanaganii var. karroensis, Cotyledon orbiculata var. viridis, Cotyledon decussata var. dielsii, Cotyledon orbiculata var. dinteri, Cotyledon orbiculata var. elata, Cotyledon orbiculata, Cotyledon ovata, Cotyledon ramosissima, Cotyledon orbiculata var. ramosa, Cotyledon ramosa, Cotyledon orbiculata var. higginsiae, Cotyledon orbiculata var. ausana, Cotyledon papillaris var. tricuspidata, Cotyledon ausana, Cotyledon decussata var. hinrichseniana, Cotyledon papillaris, Cotyledon engleri, Cotyledon orbiculata var. obovata, Cotyledon mucronata, Cotyledon tricuspidata


On Sep 16, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Highly variable species... have seen some with small green leaves, large silver leaves, ovoid, long, round, flat... etc. Not sure if all should be divided into subspecies, but it is clear all plants identified as this species are not all the same. The Cotyledon 'macrantha form' is a deep green, as opposed to all the others which are a pale blue or powdery silver blue-green.


On Aug 23, 2003, Happenstance from Northern California, CA wrote:

Here in Northern California I have the "blue" form growing in several pots by design and other places just by accident. It really will take over if given the room, so I do not grow it in the ground on purpose.

The forms vary a great deal, and not all the plants from the original look exactly alike. Amount of sun, amount of fertilizer, amount of care(less is better) all slightly alter the look of the plant. The flowers in a pot in the greenhouse are definitely "pinkish" as compared to the red/orange/yellow out in the hot sun. The amount of "powder" on the leaves is reduced because I water with a heavy handed hose, but winter in the greenhouse sees the powder return.