How to Grow Sedum Plants

Guide to Growing Gold Moss, Ghost Plant, and Stonecrop

The Sedum genus contains hardy perennial leaf succulents that range in height from 5 to 60 cm (2 to 24 inches).

Their size and trailing nature makes them ideal for many purpose in the garden, such as in rock gardens, gaps in walls, and for edging.

There are many species in the Sedum genus, so blooming time varies from the start of summer to early autumn.

Stonecrop sedum

Flowers are usually star-shaped and white, pink or yellow. Some common names for Sedum include Autumn joy stonecrop, Gold Moss, Worm Grass, Wall pepper, Ice Plant, Orpine, and Stonecrop. Species specific information on growing Two-row stonecrop / Sedum spurium.

Sedum divergens
Sedum divergens by brewbooks.

How to Grow Sedum

Sedum Growing Guide and Facts

  • Common names: Gold Moss, Ghost Plant, Spreading Stonecrop, Prick-madam. Stonecrop: Goldmoss; White; Thick-leaved; Reflexed; Blue. Worm grass, October Daphne.
  • Scientific Name: Sedum acre; S. anglicum; S. spurium; S. divergens; S. spathulifolium; S. spectabile.
  • Life Cycle: Hardy perennials, some annuals; Succulents.
  • Height: 2 to 20 inches (5—60 cm). Matt-forming through to small shrubs.
  • Native: Europe, Asia, North America.
  • Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9.

  • Flowers: Species dependent: Beginning of summer to early autumn.
  • Flower Details: Yellow, white, pink. Star-shaped. Small. Usually have five petals (some species have four or six). Twice as many stamens as petals. Terminal clusters.
  • Foliage: Usually succulent, but also herbaceous members. Leaves store water. Alternate cylindrical leaves. Rounded at the tip. Grey, green, turquoise.

  • Sowing: Surface. Germination time: one to four weeks. Spacing 6 to 24 inches (15—60 cm) depending on species size.
    Seed: Method 1: Seeds should first be sown into flats in the autumn. Next sink the flat into the ground in an area that offers shade, preferably close to a wall that faces north. Provide a glass/plastic covering. Keep an eye on the flats to ensure that the soil remains moist. Bring the flats indoor at the beginning of spring and keep at 60°F (16°C). Transplant seedlings to their final location following the last frost.
    Seed: Method 2: In the spring, mix seeds in a moist growing medium, then put in flats, wrap in a large plastic bag, then stratify by refrigeration for three weeks. Next bury the flat as described above. Once seedlings emerge transplant them to their final location.

  • Requirements and care: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Soil pH 5.5 to 7. Some species (e.g., Sedum maximum; Great Stonecrop) perform best in moist soils, yet other species are succulent, maintaining water in their leaves, and are susceptible to fungal infections if overwatered. Cut back to the ground in autumn. Propagate: from summer cuttings, or by dividing in the spring in cooler areas or the autumn in warmer areas.

  • Family: Crassulaceae
  • Closely Related Species: Stonecrop, Crassula, Cotyledon, and Tylecodon.
  • Miscellaneous: Some species, especially Sedum reflexum (Prick-madam) are used as a salad leaf/herbs.

How to Grow Sedum Species in the Garden

It is probably easiest to start Sedum genus members off in the spring.

Sow Sedum seeds in pots, put in a plastic bag, and refrigerate for three weeks.

The pots should then be sank into the ground in a shady part of the garden, and covered with glass. It should take from one to four weeks for the seeds to germinate.

Transplant the young seedlings at a distance of 15 cm (6 inches; small Sedum varieties), 30 cm (12 inches; medium) or 60 cm (2 feet; large Sedum species) apart.

Sedum should be grown in a sunny part of the garden that has good drainage, and a moist slightly acidic (pH 5.5 to 7) soil.

Ghost Plant Sedum
Ghost Plant Sedum by gilintx.

Caring for Sedum

It is very easy to care for Sedum species such as Gold Moss, Stonecrop, and Worm grass. They should be watered regularly to keep moist, but do not allow the soil to become drenched.

At the end of the season, in the autumn, cut back to ground level.

If you require more plants then propagate by either taking cuttings in the summer, or dividing the plants in the spring or autumn.

Common Questions

How many members does the Sedum genus have?

The Sedum genus consists of around 400 to 600 species.

Do members of Sedum make a good garden or landscaping plant?

Yes, Sedum are excellent garden and landscaping plants, known for their attractive succulent foliage, drought tolerance, and wide range of flower colors.

Which Sedum species are most frequently grown by gardeners?

Commonly grown species include Sedum spectabile (Ice Plant) and Sedum acre (Goldmoss Stonecrop).

Are members of the Sedum plant genus fragrant?

While some Sedum species may have a slight fragrance, they are typically grown for their visual appeal rather than their scent.

What is the perfect location to grow Sedum?

Sedum prefers full sun and well-drained, even gritty soil. They are excellent for rock gardens and green roofing due to their low maintenance needs.

Is Sedum invasive in the USA, if so in which states?

While some Sedum species can be invasive, the specific invasive species and states vary. Always check local regulations for the most current information.

How do I remove Sedum plants from my garden?

Sedum can be easily removed by uprooting the plant. Ensure you remove all of the root system to prevent regrowth.


The Sedum genus, also known as Stonecrop, includes a diverse range of succulent plants native to the Northern Hemisphere. They are appreciated for their drought tolerance, low maintenance needs, and the variety of flower and foliage colors available.

Sedum can be planted from cuttings, division, or seeds, ideally during spring. They prefer full sun and well-drained, even rocky or sandy soil. Due to their succulent nature, they require minimal watering and are an excellent choice for xeriscaping or rock gardens.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Sedum plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Kalanchoe blossfeldiana and Rochea plants.