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Habit at Kula Ace Hardware and Nursery, Maui, Hawaii (USA). September 06, 2007.
Origin and Habitat: People's Republic of China (Anhui, Guangdong, Guizhou, Jiangxi.)
Altitude range: Around 500-1000 metres above sea level.
Habitat and ecology: Sedum tetractinum grows among rocks near streams.
- Sedum tetractinum Fröd.
ENGLISH: Chinese stonecrop, Fish-scale sedum
CHINESE (中文): 四芒景天, Si mang jing tian
Description: Sedum tetractinum, also known as 'Chinese stonecrop' or 'Fish-scale sedum', is a low growing herbaceous perennial succulent ground hugger. It spreads by runners forming a mat of overlapping, rounded foliage which resembles fish scales. The green to bronze foliage sports fabulous burgundy autumnal colour. Flower spikes of tiny star-shaped yellow flowers appear over the shiny foliage during summer. Plants root at their tips to eventually form large carpets.
Stems: Sterile stems ever-lengthening, wiry, decumbent, branched, brittle, rooting at nodes often trailing and nearly rhyzomatous. Flowering stems simple or branched, erect or prostrate, 9-15 cm long.
Leaves: Alternate, or 2-3-verticillate forming rosettes at the branch tips, ovate to orbiculate, 15-32 mm long, 10-13 mm wide, pseudopetiolate, basally abruptly and narrowly cuneate, apex rounded, minutely papillate, bright green turning dark bronze or burgundi often deciduous in winter.
Inflorescence: Scorpioid, pedunculate, bracts shortly petiolate, orbicular, 4-5 mm, apex minutely papilliferous.
Flowers: Tetramerous, petals lanceolate-oblong. Sepals narrowly triangular, ca. 0.8 mm long apex obtuse. Petals lanceolate-oblong, 3.5-5 lonh about 1 mm broad, apex obtuse. Stamens 8, in two series slightly shorter than petals; antepetalous ones inserted approx. 0.8 mm from petal base. Nectar scales broadly spatulate, 0.7 × 0.4 mm, apex obtuse. Carpels 4, divergent, 4-5 mm, base connate. Styles approx. 0.8 mm. Sedum flowers are very attractive to bees and butterflies.
Blooming season: Late summer (August to september in habitat).
Fruits (Follicles): Russet, many seeded.
Seeds: Ovoid, 1-1.2 mm, mammillate.
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Forest & Kim Starr “Crassulaceae > Sedum tetractinum (Chinese sedum)”. Plants of Hawaii. <http://www.starrenvironmental.com>. 23 Oct. 2014.
2) Flora of China “175. Sedum tetractinum Fröderström” FOC Vol. 8 Page 242 <http://www.efloras.org> Web. 23 Oct. 2014.
3) Jimmy Turner “Perennials for dry shade” <http://www.finegardening.com> Web. 23 Oct. 2014.
Leaves at Kula Ace Hardware and Nursery, Maui, Hawaii (USA). September 06, 2007. Photo by: Forest Starr & Kim Starr
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