Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi [kal-un-KOH-ee, fed-tscheng-koh-eye] is a low-growing perennial succulent with pretty flowers and compact foliage.
The name of the plant honors botanist Boris Fedtschenkoi and is now known as Bryophyllum fedtschenkoi.
Native to Madagascar, the plant belongs to the Crassulaceae family of plants and the genus Bryophyllum.
Since its introduction to North America, it’s established itself in parts of the southern United States.
It’s a relatively easy succulent to grow as a houseplant, and it makes a great ground cover in suitable climates.
You may hear it called by its common name including:
- Lavender Scallops
- Kalanchoe Stonecrop
- South American Air Plant
- Gray Sedum
- Variegated Lavender Scallops
Kalanchoe Fedtschenkoi Care
Size & Growth
Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi ‘Variegata’ is a short, shrubby succulent typically reaching 1′ – 2′ feet tall.
It features stems which spread out from the root along the ground, forming large colonies of thick succulent leaves.
The blue-green leaves have cream-colored variegation along scalloped edges.
The edges may turn red or pink under strong sunlight or drought conditions.
The fleshy foliage is often darker green toward the center and trimmed with lavender.
Each leaf may reach up to 2″ inches and feature two to eight teeth around the edges.
The stems are smooth and bendable. When the stems reach the ground, they may take root and grow new plants.
Flowering and Fragrance
In the late spring to early summer, the plant produces small bell-shaped flowers.
The flowers hang loosely from upright stems.
The loose clusters of flowers are often reddish-brown and only reach about 3/4-inch in size.
Each flower has a short calyx and a slightly longer corolla.
Light & Temperature
The plant is winter hardy in (USDA Zones) hardiness zone 9b or warmer.
Outside of these areas, it’s typically grown indoors as a houseplant.
It can tolerate temperatures below freezing for short periods.
If temperatures regularly drop below 25° degrees Fahrenheit (-4° C), bring it indoors for the winter.
The plant needs lots of strong sunlight (preferably full sun), whether grown indoors or outside, especially during the summer.
When grown inside, place it near a south-facing or west-facing window.
Watering and Feeding
Water the plant infrequently. It’s easy to overwater this plant.
- Allow the soil to dry out between watering.
- Feeding helps encourage thicker, healthier growth.
- Feed the plant bi-weekly with a liquid fertilizer throughout the summer months.
- During the winter, stop feeding the plant.
- The plant also requires less water during the winter.
- Wait to water the plant until it begins to shrivel.
Soil & Transplanting
Use porous soil with fast drainage to help prevent over-watering and mold growth.
To make regular potting soil more porous, add sand or perlite.
Lavender scallops require transplanting every few years.
Transplanting allows you to replace the old soil with fresh soil and move up to a larger pot if necessary.
When repotting, use caution around the leaves.
The leaves are a little brittle and may snap when handled.
Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi does not require grooming.
It’s a compact succulent rarely exceeding 2′ feet in size.
How to Propagate Lavender Scallops
This is one of the easiest plants to propagate from:
- From the plantlets growing along leaf margins
If grown in the ground, the stems may take root and grow new plants.
To propagate by division or with a leaf cutting, prepare a small pot with a cactus mix or add sand to regular potting soil to achieve the right consistency.
Read more: How To Make Cactus Soil
When dividing the plant, separate at the base, using caution to avoid damaging the leaves.
Allow the divided plant to dry overnight before placing it in its new home.
If using cuttings, cut the leaf from the stem and place it in the soil.
The plant shouldn’t need rooting hormone. It should take root within weeks.
It’s also possible to collect seeds from the flowers after they bloom.
Allow the flowers to dry on the plant, and then remove them.
After the flowers completely dry, separate the debris to retrieve the seeds.
Plant the seeds in a cactus potting mix or potting soil combined with sand and water thoroughly once.
Don’t water again until the seedlings appear.
Within a few months, the seedlings should be hardy enough for transplanting in their containers.
Pests or Diseases Of Gray Sedum
Lavender scallops do not suffer from too many threats, but they may occasionally attract mealy bugs or scale insects.
When the pests first appear, remove them with sprays of water or pick them off individually.
If the infestation grows, treat with insecticide.
Another potential issue is the toxicity of the plant.
Parts of the plant are poisonous to animals and may cause irritation to humans when ingested.
Keep it away from small children, cats, and dogs.
Suggested Uses for Variegated Lavender Scallops
Kalanchoe fedtschenkoi makes a great houseplant.
Grow it near a windowsill where it can get plenty of bright light throughout the day.
In warm climates, consider growing it in a garden.
The low-growing lavender scallops can grow under the shade of taller plants if the plants don’t completely cut off the sunlight.
It looks great with Echeveria plants and other similar garden plants.