Hen and Chicks (Sempervivum), also known as houseleeks or liveforever with their charming rosette clusters, are resilient succulents that thrive in various conditions. Their low-maintenance nature make them a perfect choice for new plant parents.
Light: Plant your Hen and Chicks in a location with full sunlight. They prefer at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily, but they can tolerate partial shade, especially in hot climates. Outdoor locations with well-draining soil are ideal.
Watering: Hen and Chicks are drought-tolerant, and overwatering is a common issue. Water sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. In the growing season (spring and summer), water when the top inch of soil feels dry. Reduce watering in the dormant season (fall and winter).
Soil: Use a well-draining succulent or cactus potting mix. Hen and Chicks thrive in sandy or gritty soil. Good drainage is crucial to prevent waterlogged roots. If planting in the ground, ensure the soil is well-draining.
Temperature and Humidity: Sempervivum tolerate a wide range of temperatures but prefer cooler conditions. They can endure frost but may need protection in extremely cold climates. Hen and Chicks are adaptable to normal household humidity levels.
Fertilizing: Hen and Chicks don't require frequent fertilization. Apply a diluted, balanced liquid fertilizer during the growing season every 4-6 weeks. However, they can thrive without fertilizer.
Pruning: Pruning is generally not necessary for Hen and Chicks. Remove any dead or dried leaves at the base of the rosettes for aesthetic purposes.
Propagation: Sempervivum produce offsets, or "chicks," around the main rosette. These can be gently separated and replanted to propagate new plants. Allow the chicks to establish roots before transplanting.
Pets: Hen and Chicks are generally non-toxic to pets, making them a safe choice for gardens or indoor arrangements.