ISI 2020-30. Senecio articulatus ‘Candlelight’ G. Rowley

Senecio articulatus, referred to as the candle plant in reference to its thick, waxy, sausage-like, jointed stems, is a delightfully cartoonish succulent. These are gray-green and striped with triads of lines that descend from each leaf scar and, when grown in bright, dry conditions, can turn deep red. Leaves are fleshy and gray, pinnatisect with a spade-shaped terminal division. The flowers are white and nondescript but often announce themselves with a fetid odor, reminiscent of a cat’s litter box but don’t let that deter you from growing it! The inflorescences are easily snapped off if you find their aroma objectionable. This variegated selection has all of that but with the added attraction of leaves with cream colored margins that blush pink in good light. An occasional pale stem joint will occur, though stems are typically normal, and reversion to non-variegated leaves is infrequent. Gordon Rowley coined the cultivar name for this variegated sport for his 1994 book Succulent Compositae, a fitting epithet for this charming form. Rooted cuts of HBG 118620, a plant from the late Joe Stromei in 2005. $10.

Photo © 2020 by Karen Zimmerman. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.

Published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal, Vol. 92 (2), Summer 2020