sedum autumn joy 'flops' and 'dishes'

newgeneral(z8WA)October 5, 2008

True to its reputation, sedum autumn joy is easy to grow and adds beautiful color to my fall garden, but how do I keep it from forming a flopping "bowl"? I cut it back to the ground each spring. By fall I have tall growth around the outside of the plant that ends up flopping over after it blooms, revealing much shorter, newer growth in the center of the plant. Does sedum need to be divided yearly?

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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

It does that when it has been left alone for too long. You need to dig and divide it every several years.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2008 at 10:21PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Shading could also be a factor. As a side note translation autumn joy is often used here but cultivar name is correctly 'Herbstfreude'. Same as with human names cultivar names do not change when the plant enters a country speaking a different language.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2008 at 10:41PM
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gardengal48

Sedums prefer lean soil - that is, soil that is not overly fertile - even sandy or rocky - no fertilizing and only enough water to keep them hydrated. Flopping often occurs when the plant is grown in enriched soil preferred by other perennial plantings or in less than full sun. It will also benefit from being pinched or cut back a couple of times earlier in the growing season. I've not found dividing to be necessary very often, in fact I can't recall the last time mine were divided. This is a plant that will benefit from tough love rather than too much attention :-)

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 7:41AM
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dottyinduncan(z8b coastal BC)

Mine doesn't flop. The deer make sure that it never gets too tall! They teased me by just nibbling on it earlier in the year but as soon as it was close to flowering, it is eaten quite raggedly.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 11:27AM
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buyorsell888(Zone 8 Portland OR)

Cisco says to cut it back by half in May or June, I forget which. I also forgot to do it......

    Bookmark   October 6, 2008 at 1:18PM
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