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Succulent puts on a late summer show.

For sturdy, long-lasting flowers from late summer through fall, consider planting stonecrop (Sedum spectabile) now.

Flat-topped flower clusters in shades of pink, rose, and red make this sedum stand out from most other succulents. The plants are quite hardy; although they die down in the winter, they grow and bloom again year after year.

The mounded, 18-inch-tall plants perform well in containers on sunny decks and terraces. For a striking addition to a perennial border, plan S. spectabile in drifts of 3 to 12 plants, spacing them 12 to 18 inches apart.

Although it can take tougher growing conditions, this sedum needs rich, moist soil for best flower production. Average garden watering and fertilizing keep it blooming lavishly for up to three months. Cut plants back when flowers finish or when they fade after fall frosts.

The most commonly grown type has rosy pink flowers. But for a greater variety of colors, look for named forms such as "Autumn Joy' (flowers turn russet red), 'Brilliant' (dark rose-red blossoms), 'Carmen' (soft pink to rose-colored flowers), and 'Meteor' (bright carmine red.)
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Copyright 1985 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Sunset
Date:Jul 1, 1985
Words:179
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