Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulent plants ((Hens & Chicks)) are some of the most popular succulents around today, and they make excellent additions to any indoor or outdoor garden.
These evergreen perennials have thick, spiny leaves that are often colored with beautiful shades of blue or violet, adding an interesting splash of color wherever they’re planted.
These evergreen perennials prefer partial sun exposure and dry soil conditions, but in the right environment, sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents can live for decades without any care at all!
Experts recommend sempervivum pacific blue ice succulent care to keep your plants in the best health possible. Learning about proper care for your sempervivum pacific blue ice succulent will ensure you have strong, healthy plants that have long life spans and are easy to maintain.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice is one of the most popular varieties, with its distinct compact rosettes in shades of blue, white, and yellow that look stunning in any container or garden bed.
Below tips will show you how to properly care for sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents so they can live healthy, happy lives in your home or garden.
Origin and distribution
Sempervivum pacific blue ice, also known as hen and chicks or houseleeks, is a member of the Crassulaceae family. There are approximately 40 different species of Sempervivum (hen and chicks) making it a well-known and easily recognizable succulent.
They are native to Europe, Asia, northern Africa, and North America. Sempervivums can be found growing in crevices in rocks, open fields, or even inside cracks on buildings. It has been introduced throughout most parts of the world, including Australia.
The name sempervivum comes from Latin meaning always alive which refers to its ability to survive harsh winters. In fact, many hens and chicks have survived for over 100 years!
The common name hen and chicks come from their unique growth pattern, when one plant dies another grows out of its center creating a clump with multiple plants connected together.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice propagation
Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents can be propagated in several ways. One of the easiest and most popular ways is to simply cut off pieces that contain a rosette or two of leaves, along with some stem. These will grow fine on their own, with minimal effort from you.
You can also propagate by taking offsets—that is, baby plants that have grown up around your original plant. In order to do so, take a small section of your plant’s root system (usually about 1/4 inch) and plant it in the soil. It should take root within weeks if properly cared for.
Finally, you can also divide larger clumps into smaller ones. To do so, remove one entire side of your clump and replant it elsewhere. This is a great way to create many new plants at once!
Be sure to choose a sunny location for all these methods as well; sempervivums need lots of sunlight to thrive.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice care information
The Sempervivum, commonly known as hens and chicks or houseleeks, is a succulent native to Europe and North Africa. They are popular for their attractive blue-gray leaves that are shaped like rosettes with chicks (miniature rosettes) sprouting off of the main stem.
The plant also produces long stalks covered in tiny white flowers during the summer months.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents will thrive in partial to full shade. However, if placed directly in sunlight, they may brown and get crispy in places. If you’re growing them indoors near a window, it’s best to rotate them every few days so they won’t burn. Because these succulents are extremely low-maintenance, they can be easily moved around your house on a whim.
While most Sempervivum species are commonly called Hens and Chicks, Sempervivum heuffelii is a species that is sometimes sold as or referred to as Blue Ice. It has succulent, pale-blue leaves. When you purchase a young Sempervivum (called a crown), it will likely come in peat moss or sphagnum moss mix, not soil.
This is fine for a short time but eventually, you’ll need to repot your plant into real soil. To do so, remove your plant from its container and gently tease apart any roots that have become intertwined with one another.
The ideal time to water your Sempervivum is every 7-10 days. While some succulents can survive on a once-every-two weeks schedule, Sempervivums grow best with more frequent watering. The soil should never be allowed to dry out, if it does, the plant may wilt and look sickly for quite some time before recovering.
Overwatering is also a risk for succulents, so check on soil moisture regularly but avoid watering unless necessary. If you’re unsure whether or not your plant needs water, give it a good soak and wait an hour or two to see if any excess water comes out of its drainage holes.
If not, you’re good to go! A good rule of thumb is that if you have any doubts about how much (or how little) water your plants need, err on the side of less rather than more. You can always pour off excess liquid later!
You can use both a slow-release and liquid plant food to care for your Sempervivum. The slow-release kind is applied once every three months, while you should apply diluted liquid food once a week during active growth. Use about 1/4 of what you normally would for non-succulents—you don’t want to overfeed succulents.
Alternatively, use a light handful of slow-release fertilizer mixed into potting soil when planting. Do not fertilize your plants in winter (it will burn them). And be sure to water deeply enough that water penetrates all soil layers; you don’t want any sitting on top!
Sempervivum is a hardy succulent, but it still needs plenty of sunlight to flourish. Make sure to place your plant in an area that gets at least six hours of sun per day and keep it away from drafty areas. As with any succulent, avoid letting it sit in cold temperatures for extended periods.
The key to happy Sempervivum pacific blue ice is allowing it to adjust gradually from its potting medium’s temperature to room temperature. It takes at least five hours for a plant in full sun to go from 90°F (32°C) down to 70°F (21°C). If you live in a cooler climate, like Seattle, try acclimating your plant for 10 hours.
Succulents are known for their adaptability. This is not true of Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents, however, which require 50% relative humidity to thrive. If you live in a drier climate, keep your little friend on a wet bathroom windowsill or near a running water feature. He’ll appreciate it!
The first step to proper care for your Sempervivum is pruning. Before bringing your Sempervivum home, trim off any dead or dying leaves using a sharp pair of scissors. This can be done immediately or wait until you are ready to plant. If you choose to do it before planting, place them in a warm, bright spot out of direct sunlight with slightly moist soil.
Give them time to recover from their ordeal and water sparingly until new growth appears (this will vary by species). Once they have recovered, begin to trim back older leaves and stems as needed.
As long as they are not completely dried out, succulents respond well to being trimmed back; they will grow back quickly as long as they aren’t allowed to completely dry out between waterings.
When to repot
Sempervivums require repotting every year during their active growing season, from spring through summer. Plants are dormant in fall and winter, so you can keep them in the same container for a year or two.
However, if you choose to leave your Sempervivum pacific blue ice in place for a longer period of time, they must be root-pruned annually (in late summer) to refresh their soil supply and reduce fungal disease risk.
Sempervivums experts recommend repotting Sempervivum pacific blue ice at least every three years. The best time to do it is in early spring before new growth begins; however, if you’re short on space or aren’t ready to part with an old plant, it’s fine to wait until summer.
Like most succulents, sempervivums go dormant in winter and require very little water. If possible, try to keep them outside where they can get full sun and plenty of rainwater. During dormancy (which typically occurs from October through March in cooler climates), these succulents need only enough water to prevent their leaves from shriveling.
Use a light spray every few weeks or mist a few times each month with room-temperature water until spring arrives. Once it warms up, move your sempervivums back outside so they can enjoy as much sun as possible. This will encourage new growth for next year’s flowers!
Sempervivum pacific blue ice flower & fragrance
The succulent plants, in particular, have beautiful flowers that release a sweet fragrance. The blooms are generally yellow and green. There are also purple and red varieties of Sempervivum.
The color of their flowers can be attributed to their exposure to sunlight. When exposed to direct sunlight, Sempervivum plants produce orange flowers with some yellow tips on them; indirect sunlight creates different shades of yellows and greens, depending on how much light they get during each day.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice typically has a fast growth rate and will form a rosette with few side leaves within a year. They can also be propagated via cuttings in spring or summer. Sempervivums respond well to pinching, as it encourages branching and flowering. It also prevents them from getting leggy.
Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents are generally non-toxic. They can cause contact dermatitis in some people due to their presence of saponins. Saponins are also present in other plants, such as soapwort and oatmeal, and are known to create rashy reactions on sensitive skin.
USDA hardiness zones
Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulent thrives best in USDA hardiness zones 4 through 8. If you live outside of these zones, you can still grow it, but be aware that you’ll need to provide extra care and protection during cold weather.
Pests, diseases, and problems
If your Sempervivum pacific blue ice plant has pests, such as spider mites or aphids, remove them with a cloth dipped in soapy water. You may also use an insecticidal soap spray to help control these pests. If you see any signs of disease, remove and destroy diseased parts of your plants immediately to prevent them from spreading to other areas.
Too much water will cause your succulents to rot, so be sure to check soil moisture regularly and let your plants dry out between watering. Be careful not to overwater or underwater your plants; if they are left sitting in wet soil for too long, they can quickly develop root rot.
Now that you have enough Sempervivum pacific blue ice succulents to fill a garden, you’re going to need sunlight. Most Sempervivum like full sun and will wilt if they don’t get it.
Find an area where they will get at least 6 hours of full sun each day. Water your succulents deeply every few days or once a week when soil is dry up to your first knuckle in depth.