‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop epitomizes resilience as stonecrop, originating from China and
Korea boasts thick, light green leaves that store water for drought-tolerant
Once classified as sedum, it remains popular.
Requiring minimal care, it forms a compact mound, adorned with clusters of light pink flowers
in late summer, evolving into copper and rust hues.
The plant’s hardiness extends to resisting pests, with deer being the primary concern, easily
addressed with repellents.
Beyond its aesthetic appeal, ‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop attracts butterflies, particularly cloudless
sulfur butterflies, and bees.
Its adaptability, low-maintenance nature, and enduring charm make it an indispensable addition
to any garden, promising timeless beauty and ecological significance.
Common Name: ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop, Stonecrop, Sedum, Rock Moss, Gold Chain
Botanical Name: Hylotelephium herbstfreude
Plant Type: Perennial, Succulent, Herbaceous
Mature Size: 1-2 ft. tall, 2 ft. wide
Sun Exposure: Full
Soil Type: Sandy, Clay, Well-drained
Soil pH: Acidic to Neutral (6.0 to 7.5)
Bloom Time: Summer, Fall
Flower Color: Red, Pink, Orange
Hardiness Zones: Zones 3-10 (USDA)
Native Area: North America, Europe, Asia
‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop Care
Cultivating this plant is a breeze—provide well-drained soil, full sun, or light afternoon shade to
prevent weak growth in excessive shade or rich soil.
Avoid fertilizers and use compost sparingly if necessary. Combat leaf-sucking aphids with a forceful
water stream, neem oil, or insecticidal soap, ensuring coverage on both leaf sides.
‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop suits containers, mixed borders with simultaneous bloomers like salvia,
black-eyed Susan, Russian sage, goldenrod, and asters, or rock gardens with prairie flowers, fall-
blooming grasses, and other succulents.
While soggy soil can lead to rot, regular watering benefits container growth and hot, dry climates.
In cold winters, foliage dies back, resurfacing in spring.
Cut stems endure well in water or dry superbly. Alternatively, leave dried seed heads for songbirds
and winter allure.
‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop is a resilient, drought-tolerant perennial that flourishes in full sunlight,
requiring a minimum of six hours each day.
While stonecrops can endure partial sunlight in intense summer conditions, particularly during
mid-afternoon heat, it’s crucial to note that such conditions may result in fewer blooms on these
Stonecrops thrive in soils with moderate to low fertility; rich soil can lead to heavy blooms that
may weigh down weak stems.
The soil can range from clay to sandy and gravelly, provided it ensures proper drainage.
‘Autumn Joy’ is well-suited for rock gardens, preferring to avoid constant wetness.
Being a drought-tolerant succulent, ‘The Autumn Joy stonecrop demands occasional watering in
the majority of climates.
In the summer, stonecrops generally require light watering every one to two weeks unless situated
in arid regions, where an augmentation in watering is advisable.
It is crucial to cultivate these plants in areas with outstanding drainage and to water only after
the soil has fully drained, as persistently wet roots can lead to rot.
Temperature and Humidity
Adaptable to diverse temperature ranges, ‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop endures both scorching heat and
Flourishing in warmth and humidity, this fall plant maintains blooming even during the initial
frosts, subsequently entering dormancy for the season.
Humidity only poses a concern in locations where excess moisture is retained.
For optimal growth in high-humidity regions, cultivate in well-draining, rocky environments.
‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop thrives without the need for fertilizer unless the soil requires improvement.
To prevent leggy growth resulting from overly nutrient-rich soil, consider adding a balanced
fertilizer only if necessary during the spring.
Types of Stonecrops
‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop stands as a popular stonecrop, yet numerous akin varieties complement
rock gardens, borders, and ornamental grasses.
Explore these stonecrop options:
‘Ruby Glow’ Stonecrop:
Flourishing at eight to 12 inches, it showcases blooms atop blue-green leaves,
thriving in diverse soil conditions.
A succulent with simple or branched stems, featuring white, pink, or purple-red flowers
from spring to summer.
‘Coral Reef’ Sedum:
Heat-tolerant, this sedum grows three to four inches tall once established, adding versatility to
Pruning ‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop is crucial to prevent leggy growth and enhance robust blooms in
the subsequent season.
Maintain plant shape by eliminating damaged or diseased branches.
For an additional fall bloom display, prune in spring or summer, cutting back half the plant’s
Tailor your approach based on preferences, choosing to either prune or retain flower buds atop
stems from summer through winter.
Witness a fascinating transformation as the buds evolve from chartreuse to pink, eventually fading
to bronze or chestnut brown.
Propagating ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop
‘Autumn Joy’ requires division every two to three years for propagation.
Perform this process after fall blooming or before new spring shoots emerge.
While established plants are drought-resistant, newly propagated ones need more frequent
watering in their initial year.
Follow these steps to propagate ‘Autumn Joy’:
Every two to three years or when a dead area appears, divide existing plants in fall or spring.
Trim stems to six inches above the ground۔
Gently use a garden spade to dig around the crown without damaging the roots.
Shake off soil from the plant’s crown and separate clumps into sections, each around 12 inches in
diameter for a new plant.
Replant divisions in well-draining soil with full sunlight access. Ensure thorough watering during
the establishment phase.
How to Grow ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop From Seed
While growing ‘Autumn Joy’ from seed is discouraged due to potential variations, utilizing existing
plants for propagation ensures consistent results.
If choosing to grow from seed, follow these steps:
Plant seeds in a shallow container or seed-starting tray after the last spring frost, approximately
four to six weeks before the final frost.
Cover seeds with a thin layer of soil and position the container in indirect sunlight or use a garden
Maintain soil temperatures between 70°F to 80°F for optimal germination.
Ensure the soil remains moist and well-draining.
Once seeds are established, thin plants into separate containers, allowing sufficient space for
expansion—ideally six inches to two feet apart.
Transplant outdoors after the threat of frost has passed.
Autumn Joy’s Stonecrops demand minimal winter care. As a cold-hardy succulent, they withstand
winter weather until naturally retreating for the season.
When in containers, shield against strong winds, and increase watering frequency.
Embrace their dormant phase, remaining cautious of temperature fluctuations as new growth
emerges in spring.
While pruning is optional, reduce watering unless the soil is excessively dry, as excessive moisture
may lead to root rot.
Common Pests & Plant Diseases
‘Autumn Joy’ plants face potential threats from aphids, mealy bugs, slugs, and weevils, treatable
with neem oil if infestations escalate.
Pest presence often stems from watering imbalances, leading to rot in poorly drained soils.
Additionally, rabbits, deer, and birds may pose issues by consuming foliage.
Diseases affecting ‘Autumn Joy’ include fungal problems like root rot, blight, powdery mildew, rust,
and leaf spots.
Maintaining well-draining soil and ensuring ample sun exposure act as preventive measures
against these diseases.
Growing in nutrient-rich soil and excessive fertilizer use can contribute to unfavorable conditions,
emphasizing the importance of a balanced approach.
How to Get ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop to Bloom
Optimal ‘Autumn Joy’ stonecrop blooms result from full sun exposure and well-draining soil.
Avoid partial shade, excessive fertilizer, and wet soil to ensure continuous flowering.
Adjust your care routine to promote vibrant blooms. Regularly remove spent flowers to stimulate
the emergence of new ones.
Common Problems With ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop
Moreover, apart from occasional pest infestations, certain diseases and care conditions pose
challenges to the cultivation of the ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop.
Here are some considerations to keep in mind while growing this plant:
Leaf Drop in Plants
The presence of soil fungi, known as crown or stem rot, results in discoloration at the soil line and
eventual foliage drop as the plant succumbs.
This fungus spreads within the soil, requiring the removal of infected areas.
The foliage may exhibit reddish or brown bumps near the plant’s base.
The occurrence of dry leaves and flowers with dead spots before falling often indicates the presence
of leaf blotch.
Maintain plant health by promptly removing diseased, damaged, or yellowing leaves and branches,
ensuring good airflow, and adhering to proper care practices.
Yellow spots on leaves could signal an aphid infestation.
Aphids, while feeding on foliage, leave sap and create small holes across the plant.
They extract nutrients and harm plant tissue by injecting toxins into the leaves.
Resolving most aphid problems involves spraying plants with a mixture of soap and water,
although in some cases, insecticidal soap may be necessary.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is the best place to plant Autumn Joy sedum?
For optimal growth, this plant thrives in full sun, receiving a minimum of six hours daily.
Inadequate sunlight or excessive watering may result in weak blooms and leggy stems.
In hotter planting zones, providing a bit of light shade during the afternoon benefits Sedum
How do you care for Stonecrops?
Stonecrops thrive in sunny locations with well-drained, drought-tolerant soil, requiring minimal
When cultivating them in pots, enhance the compost with grit to ensure effective drainage.
Discover additional insights on growing sedums, particularly suitable for a south-facing border.
What temperature can Stonecrop tolerate?
Maintain an ideal temperature range of 65-75°F during the day and 50-60°F at night
for Showy Stonecrop.
Exposure to temperatures above 90°F or below 50°F poses a risk of wilting or damage.
Make seasonal care adjustments to shield the plant from extreme temperature fluctuations.