Crassula ovata foliage

Source: Own work

Crassula ovata foliage

Crassula ovata or jade plant is a beautiful arborescent succulent.

It is one of those typical plants that your grandmother grew on the windowsill and is almost indestructible.

It is a very easy houseplant: lots of light, little water and may be placed outdoors in full sun in the summer.

Growth is quite slow but putting several plants together in a pot gives it a fuller shape.

It can also be trained as a bonsai.


Crassula ovata is a large, strongly branched and rich flowering shrub of 0.6-3 m high.

The trunk is up to 20 cm in diameter at the base, round, succulent, grayish. The branches are bare, with scars of fallen leaves.

The leaves are 2-5 cm long and 1-3 cm wide, obovate or broadly elliptical, short pointed or almost round at the top, with red or green sharp edges, green and shiny.

The flowers are 5-lobed, arranged in terminal inflorescences. The flowers are white or pale pink, peduncle 1-4 cm long, calyx about 5 mm in diameter, the corolla is white or light pink, petals 5-10 mm long.

Crassula ovata flowers

Source: Own work

Crassula ovata flowers


  • Culinary: the roots were eaten in Africa.
  • Medicinally: the leaves were used for treatment of diarrhea, epilepsy, corns and as a purgative.
  • Good luck charm: in some countries the plant is grown in a porcelain pot with lion paws as a lucky charm.


Common names:

Friendship tree, jade plant, jade tree, lucky plant, money tree


Cotyledon lutea, Cotyledon ovata, Crassula arborescens, Crassula argentea, Crassula articulata, Crassula nitida, Crassula obliqua, Crassula portulacea


Crassula: from the Latin crassus (fat,thick)
Ovata: from the Latin ovatus (oval)


South Africa


Rocky slopes and sheltered ravines


USDA zone 10-11

Crassula ovata plant

Source: Own work

Crassula ovata plant



Any soil as long as it is well drained


Prefers full sun but tolerates partial shade


Water regularly, no standing water, tolerates drought


Fertilize regularly during the growth period


Is extremely heat resistant but in winter it is better to keep it in a cool place because there is less light, as long as it is frost-free.


Cuttings from leaves or stem


  • remove a leaf or stem piece from the mother plant
  • you may also cut the leaf up in a few pieces
  • place on top of the potting soil. The easiest way is to place the cuttings together with a larger plant on top of the soil
  • after a few weeks, when the roots have sprouted and new growth appears, it may be potted up
  • room temperature