Growing Jellybean Plants.

Latest Update 5th October 2016.

Jellybean Plant (Sedum Rubrotinctum).
  • The leaves of the Sedum rubrotinctum plant change colour from green to red during the summer months as a protective adaptation.  They sprout bright yellow flowers from between the leaves in mid-spring.
  • It grown well in all types of soil, but requires good drainage.
  • It grows very well in summer, and will tolerate Melbourne's fickle climate were temperatures can drop 20 deg C in less than an hour when a cool change comes through.
  • It is not frost tolerant, but we only get one or two light frosts in a Melbourne winter, and they seem to be unaffected by that. 
  • New plants can be be propagated from leaves (or beans) if they drop off or are separated from the stem and laid on the soil.
  • Sedum rubrotinctum is poisonous and can cause irritation when swallowed or touched.
  • Its an attractive plant and fills a spot amongst other succulents in my garden.

Details.
  • Binomial Name:                                       Sedum Rubrotinctum.
  • Family:                                                    Crassulaceae.
  • Garden bed type:                                     Drip line irrigated. 
  • Recommended soil pH:                             6.5 - 7.5.  
  • Plant Spacings (centres):                          500mm. 
  • Climate:                                                  Warm Temperate.
  • Geography:                                             Southern Hemisphere. 
Growing Conditions:
  • Best in full sun but will tolerate partial shade.  
  • Minimise soil disturbances to maintain a natural soil structure.  
Preparing a new bed.
  • Clear a space for your new plant in September and dispose of any organic waste in the compost.
  • When replacing an old plant, choose a spot which hasn't grown Jellybean plants for at least 3 years.
  • Apply a 60mm thick top dressing of home made compost and cover with fresh straw mulch.
  • Leave for 4 weeks to boost worm and microbial activity.
Growing Instructions
  • Propagate new plants by taking a 100mm cutting from the parent plant and removing all the leaves except for a cluster of 5 or 6 leaves at the top of the stem.  Bury the cutting 50mm of its length into sieved compost in a large jiffy pot and soak in dilute seaweed extract for an hour.
  • Buried the pot about 50mm deep in the wicking medium of an Eco-propagator
  • Once the new plant is established and has started to grow, move some of the mulch to one side and dig a hole twice as big as the new plant's jiffy pot.  Place the jiffy pot in the hole and back fill with soil.  Water it in well with dilute seaweed extract.
  • Water the plants every few days until they are established, and then allow the drip irrigation to take over. 
  • They are slow growing and don't need pruning unless to limit the plant's size.
  • Spray the plant's foliage with aerated compost tea every month at the same time as the edible plants are sprayed.
Organic Pest Control.
  • My Jellybean plant has been pest and disease free for many years, but can be effected by the following:-
  • Caterpillars.
    • When mixed with water, Bacillus thuringiensis becomes a potent (organically certified) killer of butterfly caterpillars.  It is sprayed onto the plants leaves, and when ingested, kills them by releasing toxins into their gut.  They stop feeding and die within a few days.
    • I use aerated compost tea as a foliar spray on all my ornamental plants.  I don't claim this is as effective as the bacillus, but after one year using this spray, I seem to have less pests of any kind on my plants.
  • General:
    • Regular foliar sprays of aerated compost tea boosts the natural defences of the plant by colonising the leaf surfaces with beneficial microbes.  These microbes defend it against airborne pests and diseases.
    • Similarly, proper soil preparation including annual applications of home made compost boosts the community of beneficial microbes, which defend the plant's roots against pathogens.

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