The Crassulaceae or Stonecrop family on the British Isles

A carpet of the alien New Zealand Pigmyweed or Crassula helmsii, which is swamping out everything at Clayhanger near Walsall. (Picture by Mike Poulton)

The Crassulaceae or Stonecrop family looks ornamental most of the year because of its rounded, succulent and evergreen foliage. However, the flowers give it an extra attraction!

I always associated this family with drought loving plants but I learned it has several moisture loving members too!

Several of the genera and species mentioned in Stace are in fact ornamental garden plants and have ‘escaped’ into the wild as often happens! At least one species of Crassula is now a serious weed, originally introduced as an aquatic ornamental for ponds.

Thanks for pictures donated by Mike Poulton of Ecorecord as well as from Wikipedia Commons. If you can’t see a picture, you will see what it looks like by pressing the link below the (common) Name.

The Scientific name usually has a link from the Online Atlas of the British Isles and Irish Flora. A blue background tells you about the habitat where it can be found in B.I. as well as for interesting facts or wildlife use! A pink background means a warning (such as poisonous!) or medicinal use, green for edible, ornamental or other uses.


Crassula or Pigmyweeds:
C. tillaea or Mossy Stonecrop
C. aquatica or Pigmyweed
C. helmsii or New Zealand Pigmyweed
C. decumbens or Scilly Pigmyweed
C. pubescens or Jersey Pigmyweed
Umbilicus rupestris or Navelwort
Sempervivum spp or House-leeks
Sempervivum tectorum or House-leek
Sedum spp. , Rhodiola, Hylotelephium or Stonecrops:
Rhodiola rosea ( syn. Sedum rosea) or Roseroot
Hylotelephium telephium or Orpine
Sedum acre or Biting Stonecrop
S. album or White Stonecrop
S. anglicum or English Stonecrop
S. villosum or Hairy Stonecrop
S. forsterianum or Rock Stonecrop and:

Sedum rupestre or Reflexed Stonecrop
S. anacampseros or Love-restoring Stonecrop
S. dasyphyllum or Thick-leaved Stonecrop
S. hispanicum or Spanish Stonecrop
S. nicaeense or Pale Stonecrop

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