It’s Not All Mary Poppins

Succulent Identification Assistance

… would be greatly appreciated. Anyone have any idea what this might be?


It was something Emma picked up at the grocery store, then abandoned. I’ve repotted it, and it seems happier. I think… is this what a happy succulent looks like? Shoud I be worried about those white bits on the ends of some of the stalks?


It doesn’t need much attention. (Good thing, because that’s how much it gets.) I rather like its unassuming self.

But what is it?


September 17, 2009 - Posted by | random and odd | , , ,


  1. aloe? non prickly cactus?

    Comment by Jess | September 17, 2009 | Reply

  2. It IS a cactus! I emailed a friend and he said:
    Looks like a cutting from one of the funky, distorted sempervivums such as Sempervivum ‘Oddity’, which has not yet formed distinct rosettes.

    I don’t think so. While the ones in the pictures form clumps, all right, the tips of the stalks are wrong. Mine are triangular, flat, and solid. These are curled and hollow. However, it’s close enough that I’ll be checking out other sempervivum varieties to see if I can find it. (Are succulents a sub-class of cactus, I wonder, or are they two different things?)

    Comment by Jess | September 17, 2009 | Reply

  3. It’s GREEN that’s what it is 🙂

    Thanks. You could be smarter than you think… The kids have an uncle, an entomologist at that, who, when asked “What kind of bug is this, Uncle John?” will answer, “a green one.” When the kid cries in frustration, “No, no! What’s it called?”, he’ll look quizzical and answer, “Fred?”

    Comment by billarends | September 17, 2009 | Reply

  4. It looks to me like it’s a jade plant! It’s hard to tell from the pictures, but if it is then it’s not the one you think of normally, but rather one of the jade cultivars. It’s called a Gollum. You can tell because some of the tips end in that kind of bowled out shape. There’s a good picture of one here:

    I love jade plants. Our does best in Lots of Sun and occasional watering.

    I dunno. The plant in your picture has those hollow-tipped stalks again, and they’re more rounded. Ours are all triangular spears, most with flattened tops. One side of each spear has pinstripes down it, and they have teensy little spikes edging the ‘leaves’; the flat triangle top of several spears appears to be translucent. I found this terrific website on these sorts of plants, but even there I don’t quite see it — several ‘could be’s’, but no ‘AHA!’ Dammit. And I checked…

    Comment by Haley | September 17, 2009 | Reply

  5. I think it is a form of Haworthia.
    There are many, many varieties and some very similar to your plant.

    Comment by blyger | September 17, 2009 | Reply

    • this is pretty close.


      Mine doesn’t look exactly like that because (I’ve been reading up, now I know what it is) it hasn’t been getting enough light. Insufficient sunslight, apparently, makes them a paler green, and the stalks taller. So I have a tall, weedy, pale-skinned haworthia setosa, but that’s what I’ve got, all right. THANK YOU!

      Comment by blyger | September 17, 2009 | Reply

      • does a Haworthia bloom?

        Yes, though I gather they’re usually white, small and not too showy. But there are so many varieties, there must be quite a range. I don’t know about this specific one — something else to look up!

        Comment by billarends | September 18, 2009

  6. Sarracenia – a pitcher plant. Good to get rid of flies. (-:

    I wish. The parents WILL stand with the door wide open behind them…

    Comment by Frank | September 18, 2009 | Reply

  7. Thank you!! I have this same one and I’ve never been able to find what it is. Now I know it’s haworthia retusa and can look up care and propagation tactics~

    Comment by Jeli | April 17, 2020 | Reply

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