Crassula socialis (Ivory Towers)

Crassula socialis

Last updated on August 28th, 2022 at 12:34 am

Crassula socialis, also known as crassula ivory tower succulent or ring plants, are succulent plants that grow well in warm weather and full sun. They are easy to care for and relatively inexpensive, making them excellent starter plants for new gardeners and indoor plant owners alike.

Ivory Towers is an excellent houseplant that’s also easy to take care of. So, if you’re new to plant care, this should be one of your first choices. However, if you’re an experienced gardener and just want a really beautiful houseplant that doesn’t need much attention, it still fits the bill nicely!

Crassula socialis, commonly called the ivory towers, is an attractive succulent plant that makes an excellent addition to your indoor collection of houseplants, but it isn’t without its own share of care requirements and potential problems.

Check out this guide on how to care for Crassula socialis (ivory towers) to learn more about their needs and behaviors and make sure you’re providing the best environment possible to keep your crassula healthy and thriving!

Origin and distribution

Crassula Socialis originates from South Africa and Namibia. They grow best in full sun and sandy, well-drained soil. An excellent houseplant that grows equally well outside in warmer climates. It is also known as Ring Plant or Jade Plant because of its circular growth pattern.

It is a slow-growing succulent that can reach a height of up to 1 foot tall with a spread of 3 feet wide. It is hardy to -10 degrees Celsius but will thrive at temperatures above 20 degrees Celsius. It does not like being overwatered so make sure it drains properly after watering or it will rot easily if left sitting in water for too long!

The plant should be kept away from drafts and cold spots such as windowsills where temperature changes are more noticeable. This plant thrives when it is pot-bound so repotting every two years is recommended. Repotting should be done during spring or early summer when new growth has just begun to appear on existing stems.

The roots should never be allowed to dry out completely before repotting, only just enough to get them out of their current container without damaging them.

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Crassula socialis propagation

Crassula socialis

One of Crassula socialis most interesting features is that it propagates easily. All you need to do is snap off a chunk from one of your plants and put it in a pot with soil. The best time to do so is in spring or summer when temperatures are warm.

For best results, keep both mother and daughter plants moist but not too wet, you don’t want rot, and fertilize lightly every now and then if you see signs of yellowing leaves or slow growth.

It will take some time for new roots to grow and form a healthy plant, but once they do, you can separate them into individual pots. You can also propagate by leaf cuttings; just place them on top of some soil in a sunny spot until they develop roots.

Finally, remember that these plants like well-drained soil; water only when dry. They’re hardy and easy to care for, so feel free to try out any propagation method that sounds appealing. If you have trouble finding ivory towers at nurseries or online, look up Crassula ovata instead.

It has similar care requirements but slightly different physical characteristics than Crassula socialis. Either way, you should be able to find what you need with little effort.

Before long, your ivory towers will be flourishing all over your home!

Crassula socialis care information

Crassula socialis

Crassula socialis is a succulent and as such, requires slightly different care than other plants. For example, these ring plants prefer high humidity and also need higher light to do well.

However, if you grow them outdoors in a sunny location with a few inches of rain per week, they’ll do just fine! They’re fairly drought tolerant as long as they get plenty of sun, so avoid overwatering.

Light requirement

Crassula socialis tolerates some light. In fact, if given too much shade, it may become elongated or spindly. If your plant is in direct sunlight, try moving it out of strong sunlight for a few hours per day to avoid sunburn.

If that doesn’t work, you can also use sheer curtains or blinds to diffuse and reflect more indirect light onto your plants. These types of supports are made for grow lights; you can purchase them at garden stores and online for about $30.

Soil/potting mix

Like most succulents, ivory towers do best in well-draining soil. A commercial cactus mix will work nicely—just avoid anything that has fertilizer already mixed in, as you’ll want to provide Ivory Tower with a consistent supply of water and fertilizer that matches your growing schedule.

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If you don’t have access to cactus soil, an equal mixture of sand and potting soil is a good alternative. Avoid using regular garden soil, which can retain too much moisture for these plants.

Watering

Don’t let your Crassula get too dry or they will fall victim to rot. They prefer a nice moderate watering schedule. I water mine every 7-10 days, with just enough water to soak up and not leave excess water in my saucer that could sit for days and cause rotting.

You can also use room temperature filtered water instead of cold tap water. It is also important to avoid getting any fertilizer on them when you are fertilizing other plants as it may burn their leaves if left on them for long periods of time.

Fertilizer

Ivory Towers are relatively low-maintenance plants and generally don’t require frequent fertilization. They will thrive in well-drained soil with a neutral pH, meaning they can be left to their own devices for long periods of time.

When these conditions aren’t met, a lack of nutrients will show itself quickly in leaf yellowing and curling. If you suspect your plant isn’t getting enough fertilizer, try adding some slow-release pellets or organic compost around its base.

Temperature

Though succulents are generally accustomed to a warm climate, Ivory Towers can handle some cool nights with ease. However, it’s still important to make sure your Crassula doesn’t get too cold.

In fact, keeping your plant at around 68 degrees will encourage its growth most efficiently. Just be sure not to expose it to temperatures below 60 F at night as that could damage or kill it.

Humidity

Crassula socialis thrives in high humidity. In fact, it does best when kept constantly moist. As with all succulents, make sure to let them dry out slightly between waterings and ensure your Crassula is placed in a spot where it will receive plenty of light but not be exposed to direct sunlight or intense artificial lighting.

The ideal humidity range for Crassula socialis is 50 to 70 percent. Use a hygrometer to monitor and adjust accordingly. If your home’s air tends to be dry, place your Crassula in a spot where it will receive plenty of light but not be exposed to direct sunlight or intense artificial lighting.

Conversely, if you live in an area with high humidity, keep your Crassula out of drafty areas and away from heat sources like radiators or fireplaces.

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Pruning

The best time to prune a Crassula socialis is when it’s growing most actively, usually during spring and summer. The easiest way to remove dead leaves and flowers is with your fingers—just pinch them off gently. If you need to cut one of your ivory towers back, wait until new growth emerges from it.

Pruning older leaves back will encourage new foliage to grow in its place. You can also prune back any stems that are too leggy or crowded for your liking. Since these plants are slow-growing, over-pruning isn’t as big of an issue as it is with other houseplants.

Just make sure you don’t prune all of your plants at once! Your crassula may take a few weeks to recover from major pruning, so dole out cuts slowly.

When to repot

You should repot your Crassula socialis every 1-2 years as it grows, ensuring that its roots are not constricted. When deciding when to repot your crassula, look at how much space is between its top and bottom leaves. If there’s less than one finger space between them, it’s time to transplant.

Similarly, if your plant has a diameter of more than eight inches and fewer than 10 leaves on it, you should consider re-potting as well. In both cases, make sure to water your plant thoroughly before attempting a transplant; otherwise, your plant may dry out before new roots can form.

Make sure you have enough soil for new growth in your pot and put some pebbles or small rocks in the bottom so excess water drains away from it easily.

Next, remove any dead or dying leaves from around its base and pull off any thick stems sticking out of it with sharp pruning shears or a serrated knife.

Dormancy/Winter rest

You must ensure that Crassula socialis remains dormant during its winter rest. This can be tricky and if you’re new to gardening, it might be prudent to leave Crassula in a pot and place it in a closet where it will remain cool but not freezing. If you live in a very cold climate, bring your Crassula inside for its winter rest.

Do not place it directly outside in freezing temperatures because frostbite may occur on some parts of your plant. Instead, try placing it in an unheated garage or shed. Be sure to water your Crassula every few weeks during its dormancy period and fertilize once a month with a liquid fertilizer diluted by half.

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Crassula socialis flower & fragrance

Crassula socialis

Crassula socialis is a fragrant plant with whorls of white flowers. The leaves are white, crinkled, and spiky. Crassula Socialis is an old-fashioned houseplant that can be found at many flea markets and antique stores. It makes a good gift for someone who loves plants but has trouble taking care of them.

Although it’s not widely known, ivory towers like to bask in direct sunlight as much as any other succulent plant does.

Growth rate

Ivory towers are slow-growing, but can eventually reach heights of 2-3 feet tall. They don’t like to be potted and prefer to be planted in the ground. This helps them keep their size under control, unlike if they were potted in a container.

Toxicity

Although commonly thought of as a non-toxic plant, Crassula socialis is in fact toxic. They contain oxalic acid, a chemical found in many plants that block Calcium uptake.

This can lead to nutritional deficiencies if consumed in large quantities by people or animals. Some research also suggests calcium oxalate crystals in plants may also cause choking and poisoning.

USDA hardiness zones

Crassula socialis thrives best in USDA hardiness zones 10 and 11. It can be grown as an indoor plant, but it does not tolerate temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live in a colder climate, consider growing it indoors and moving it outside during warmer months.

In climates with hot summers, grow Crassula socialis outdoors as a container plant that can be moved to a shadier area when temperatures rise above 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pests, diseases, and problems

Crassula socialis is susceptible to scale insects, spider mites, mealybugs, and aphids. Treat with a contact insecticide such as soapy water or a garlic/soap spray. Scale can be removed by wiping them off with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Ivory towers are prone to root rot if overwatered, which causes leaves to yellow and drop off.

If you notice that your plant’s roots are growing abnormally thick or have become discolored, you may need to repot it into fresh soil that drains well. Also, check for any damage from pests or disease; if you find any signs of infestation, cut away any affected parts of your plant immediately or use an insecticidal soap spray or horticultural oil as soon as possible!