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In general, I find Sedum a fascinating and engaging species, whether native or not. Their diminutive stature and sturdy nature, their bright flowers and color/texture variations invite closer examination, better down on hands and knees, up close and personal, rather than broad swaths and vistas of plants that can be viewed from a distance.
There are several Stonecrop native to Oregon; not all are readily available in local nurseries, but there is a native Sedum for nearly every garden setting and are worth seeking out.
Many are evergreen; those that are native west of the Cascades tend to be mat-forming (yes, sometimes aggressively-so. Hint: those with the broader, more spatula-shaped leaves are less invasive than those with narrower, more pointed leaves). Sedums found natively in higher-elevation and drier conditions tend to be found tucked into rocky crevices and are more likely candidates for winter-dry containers or quick-draining rock gardens.
All native Sedum flower in various shades of yellow, in similar starry-clusters held a bit above the foliage. All are fairly low-maintenance and carefree to grow, given some water and proper drainage.
S. oreganum, S. spathulifolium and S. stenopetalum are available in local nurseries; species native to more alpine / drier climates are likely available from nurseries that specialize more in dry-country plants, for they aren’t uncommon.
|Sedum oreganum – Oregon stonecrop
Tight, small green clusters of egg-to-spoon shaped evergreen leaves occasionally with a bronze cast. Topped with small clusters or open yellow starry flowers in summer. Grows in full sun to partial shade in regularly moist to dry conditions. Native west of the Cascades, all the way to the coast.
Sedum spatulifolium - Broad-leaved stonecrop
Sedum stenopetalum – Narrow-leaved sedum, Wormleaf stonecrop
|Sedum divergens – Cascade stonecrop
This is a sedum of rocky mid-elevation to subalpine areas along the Cascade and Siskiyou mountain areas. The golden, more singular star shaped flowers are held above tiny clusters of succulent oval leaves that are green when young, turning bright red when older; looking a bit like strings of jelly beans. This evergreen stonecrop spreads readily, rooting where stem tips touch the ground.
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Common Name: Stonecrop
Native Range: Depending on species, native Sedum can be found at the coast, from low elevation to alpine, both sides of the Cascades. There are approximately fourteen species native to the northwestern region.
Characteristics: Low-growing, often mat-forming, fleshy thick small leaves, either broad or narrow, common to groundcover sedums. Flowers are clusters of bright yellow stars held above the foliage.
Culture: Not all Sedum require full sun and dry conditions, but that being said, they all require some sun and good drainage in order to thrive.
Pests/Diseases: In general, Sedum are relatively pest and disease-free. They are only prone to some fungal diseases if not given proper drainage.