Sedum Autumn Joy syn. Sedum Herbstfreude
S.Autumn Joy syn. S. Herbstfreude is one of the best known of the sedums and rightly so. It is a dependable long flowering perennial, providing interest not only when in bloom. Showy foliage from spring, huge colourful flowerheads in autumn and faded flowerheads that stay of interest and a feed source into winter.
S. Autumn Joy is a clump-forming, bushy deciduous Stonecrop.The stems are unbranched and coloured a glaucous, mid-green. These bear succulent, glaucous dark green leaves, boasting form and texture.
This easy to maintain perennial flowers from early autumn when huge dusky pink flower heads arise from the foliage. Through the flowering season, the dusky pink deepens to a rich bronzy-red. Bees and butterflies are drawn in large numbers to the flowers. If the flowers are not cut back, the bronze flower heads will remain a feature throughout winter.
Plant in moderately fertile, moist soil. If sedum is planted in too fertile soil or fed too much, the growth will be very lax. Choose a site with full sun. Once established it is drought tolerant.
Handy tip: To maintain shape and avoid flopping later in the season, do not feed too much and cut the plant back by half before flowering, around October.
Image attribution: Peter Stevens