Floppy ‘Autumn Joy’ Sedum

by Genevieve on November 4, 2010

Post image for Floppy ‘Autumn Joy’ Sedum

Garden question from JohnOhConnor on YouTube:

I have three mature (2ft x 2ft) Autumn Joy in my garden. By mid summer they have flopped over like a large animal had sat down in the middle of the plant. I guess this is normal for the plant or is there anything I can do to prevent this from happening every summer?

Two things occur to me here. One is that sometimes plants like this get floppy when they aren’t getting enough light. They grow leggy, soft foliage because they are reaching for the sunshine, and then can’t hold up the stems any more when they begin to flower and have all that weight to support.

The other thing I’d suspect is that maybe it is time to divide them. When the clumps get very large, the plant can start flopping just because there is so much of it. The plant holds itself up in two ways – via roots underground that anchor it, and by growing sturdy stems. Plants that need dividing can have issues getting enough water and nutrients to the aboveground portions, resulting in lanky stems, and can also have trouble growing enough anchoring roots because the plant is simply too crowded by its own growth to do so.

So if the plant is getting full, hot sun all day, I’d experiment with dividing a clump or two and see if that helps.

Read more about ‘Autumn Joy’ Sedum and how to prune and divide it here.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Judy Lapka September 20, 2013 at 11:20 am

I have 2 Autumn Joy Stoncrop plants that are 2 years old. We had a hot summer with hardly any rain. One plant recently started to show that greens and stems are looking pail and now they are falling over and falling out of the ground. Did I water too much? They are planted on the east side of my home. The other plant looks good.

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Dai September 22, 2013 at 5:34 pm

This is exactly happening to my Autumn Joy. I believe there are 2 groups of Autumn Joy in my garden. One group is growing well and the other is flopping Sedum. So you are saying I can divide Sedum to see what will happen to flopping. Can I divide in September or October? I live in Vancouver, Canada.

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